EPA Board Meeting Minutes for the years 2021, 2022 and 2023

AIE request OCCS AIE 2023 03


2023 Board Minutes

Records 110 – 100

Record 99 – 90

Record 89-80

Records 79-70

Records 69 -60

Records 59-50

Records 49 -40

Records 39 – 30

Records 29-20

Records 19-10

Records 9 -1

EPA Ireland Submission Data available as RSS, CSV and SQLite

Whilst there is a ton of useful data on the EPA Ireland web-site, it’s not exactly easy to track what’s going on.

Tool built by https://twitter.com/conoro to scrape the thousands of individual RSS feeds and generate what is hopefully helpful to those of you who wish to monitor submissions on the site.

The code is all up on GitHub here. In summary what it does is:

  • Once a day around 1.30am GMT, it scrapes all the feeds on the EPA site
  • It saves all the data into a SQLite database and uploads that to Amazon S3
  • It updates a single small RSS feed with all the submissions from the previous day
  • It generates a new CSV file with the same data as the RSS feed and saves that to GitHub

Subscribing to the RSS Feed

Use this URL in Feedly or similar: https://raw.githubusercontent.com/conoro/epa-rss/main/output/daily.xml

Viewing the daily CSV files.

They are all here in the repo starting on Sep 22nd 2022: https://github.com/conoro/epa-rss/tree/main/output/csv/daily

Getting notified by email (experimental)

If you’d like to receive email with a link to the latest CSV each day:

  • Create a GitHub Account
  • Click the drop-down menu beside “Watch” in the top right of this project’s page.
  • Select “Custom” and tick the box beside “Issues”. Then click Apply.
  • You should start receiving the emails beginning tomorrow.

SQLite Database

The latest full set of scraped data is available as a SQLite DB that you can download here. Use something like SQLiteStudio to browse and query it.

Examining the data in the SQLite Database using Datasette Lite

You can use a very cool project by Simon Willison called Datasette Lite to browse and query all the latest data in your browser by going here. I highly recommend playing around with it, as you can query by keywords and date ranges.


General Felling Licence application from Coillte in respect of lands at Garvagh Glebe, Co Leitrim – Peatslides and Windfarms

Internal review AAIE/23/227

Result of the internal review of this decision

As you will be aware from the acknowledgement of your request for an internal review, I was assigned to review your request. I made a decision on your review request on 25/04/2023. Having reviewed this request, and having identified 8 records which relate to it, I have decided that you should be granted access to all of the records, and I annul the original decision accordingly.

Notes on landslide

EIA Reports in three mandatory categories for assessment

AIE Request, 26/5/23

Under the AIE Regs to request the following:

A full environmental impact assessment report is needed to determine whether certain works listed can proceed. Current thresholds where these reports are mandatory are

1) 4km for hedgerow removal
2) 50ha for land drainage works

3) 50ha for taking uncultivated/semi-natural land into intensive use

Please provide EIA reports as submitted to DAFM for 2021, 2022 and 2023 YTD in each of the three categories

For context, please note the following article


NP CLG CN90557 Stralongford, Co. Leitrim – request to Nature Partners CLG outside the AIE Regs

I refer to your further request made on 11 May, and subsequent email correspondence of 18 May.

Nature Partners CLG will not provide you with the information requested on a voluntary basis.

Yours sincerely

Joseph O’Rourke

On behalf of HMP Secretarial Limited, Company Secretary to Nature Partners CLG

Joseph O’Rourke | McCann FitzGerald LLP | Senior Associate | Direct +353-1-607 1232  | Mobile  +353-87-967 9735
Riverside One, Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, Dublin 2, D02 X576

I refer to your request made to the info@naturetrust.ie email address on 20 February 2023.

You requested all information related to afforestation application CN90557, Stralongford, Co. Leitrim made to DAFM in the name of Nature Partners CLG including information relating to the donation, purchase and / or leasing of the lands concerned by or from Coillte.

We hereby refuse your request on the grounds that Nature Partners CLG is not a public authority for the purposes of the European Communities (Access to Information on the Environment) Regulations 2007 (“AIE Regulations”), and, as Nature Partners CLG is not subject to the AIE Regulations, it is therefore not required to disclose the information requested.

Yours sincerely

Joseph O’Rourke

On behalf of HMP Secretarial Limited, Company Secretary to Nature Partners CLG

Joseph O’Rourke | McCann FitzGerald LLP | Senior Associate | Direct +353-1-607 1232  | Mobile  +353-87-967 9735
Riverside One, Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, Dublin 2, D02 X576

Note: this issue could be addressed through the proposed change to Coillte’s mandate, which passed second stage in Seanad Éireann. Provision could be made via legislation to prevent Coillte from establishing or participating in joint ventures which would limit public transparency and accountability

Office of the Commissioner for Environmental Information Annual Review 2022

Received 151% more appeals in 2022 compared to 2021, which was itself a record year for appeals

Completed 227 cases, an increase of 144 on 2021

Delays at any stage of the AIE request process, or inappropriate refusal to release information, jeopardise the ability of requesters to participate in environmental decision-making.

The AIE Regulations and AIE Directive make it clear that there is a presumption in favour of the release of environmental information.

In comparison with recent years, 2022 saw a slight reduction in activity for the OCEI in relation to hearings and judgments. As of 31 December 2022, our Office had five live cases before the Courts, two of which were initiated in 2022.

Glenasmole restoration plan


Site code: 001209

Designation: Special Area of Conservation (SAC)

County: Dublin

Coordinates: Latitude: 53.2415 Longitude: -6.36331

SAC Area: 148Ha

Qualifying Interests

Semi-natural dry grasslands and scrubland facies on calcareous substrates (Festuco-Brometalia) (* important orchid sites) [6210]

Molinia meadows on calcareous, peaty or clayey-silt-laden soils (Molinion caeruleae) [6410]

Petrifying springs with tufa formation (Cratoneurion) [7220]


Greenway fencing: sample project, Boyne Valley to Lakelands County Greenway (BVLCG)

AIE Request 25-23

Under the AIE Regs to request any ecologist reports or other environmental assessments that consider the impact of chainmesh/security/other fencing on wildlife and biodiversity in relation to greenway/blueway developments in Meath

In particular to include:
– length of fencing in km in each greenway/blueway development
– mesh size in fencing
– any mitigation measures such as wildlife passes, and the spec for these measures, eg spacing, size of wildlife passes, no wire mesh etc

For the purposes of this AIE please consider the years 2020 to date

Summary of Decision

The Boyne Valley to Lakelands County Greenway (BVLCG) is the only Greenway which is being delivered within the period of this request, 2020 to date. In relation to the first part of the request I am refusing same as the records are already in the public domain and can be accessed at
• At the planning office (Buvinda House, Dublin Road, Navan, Co. Meath, C15 Y291)
Quoting the following references P8/13007 and P8/13009

In relation to the second part of the request I attach herewith details of standard construction details for fencing:
CC-SCD-00301-03 (Post and Rail)
CC-SCD-00304-03 (Stock Proof)

The fencing details allow for wildlife to push under the fence, while deterring pedestrians and pets using the greenway from entering private property. Wildlife crossing points are not used on greenways because there is no risk of road collisions.

The extent to which fencing has been applied to the greenway is as follows:

Navan to Tara Mines
o Total Distance of Boundary 4.8Km
o Stock Proof Fencing 350m
o Post and rail Fencing 850m
o Security Fencing 252m

Tara Mines to Wilkinstown
o Total Distance of Boundary 10.8Km
o Stock Proof Fencing 1400m
o Post and rail Fencing 495m

Wilkinstown to Castletown (Under Construction)
o Total Distance of Boundary 9.1 Km
o Stock Proof Fencing 8318m
o Post and rail Fencing 830m

Castletown to Nobber
o Total Distance of Boundary 12.4Km
o Stock Proof Fencing 300m
o Post and rail Fencing 1680m

Nobber to Kingscourt (Under Construction)
o Total Distance of Boundary 22Km
o Stock Proof Fencing 11730m
o Post and rail Fencing 2880m