What can be done

 Measures can be taken to protect our biodiversity and prevent further loss of native plants, animal and habitat.

 1. The creation of carefully chosen protected areas ensure that all regional ecosystems are represented.

There are many Irish National Parks dotted around the country.

2. Economic incentives to conserve biodiversity can provide motivation to use ecosystem services sustainable.

Teagasc's Irish Afforestation Grant and Premium Scheme provides a package to encourage the planting of forests by compensating forest owners for the costs of forest establishment. The government's GLAS scheme encourages sustainable farming practices.

3. Prevention and early intervention have proven to be the most successful and cost-effective way of tackling invasive species.  A particularly prominent Irish example is the hybridization between native Red deer (Cervus elaphus) and Sika deer (Cervus nippon).

In some areas, up to 40% of deer are mongrelised, permanently polluting the gene pool and changing the appearance and behaviour of the native deer over generations.

4. Strong institutions at all levels are essential to support biodiversity conservation. International agreements need to include enforcement measures, with most direct actions to halt or reduce biodiversity loss to be taken at local or national level.

In Ireland, the Government adheres to the National Biodiversity Plan of 2002, and Actions for Biodiversity 2011-2016, Ireland’s 2nd National Biodiversity Plan.

5. Informing society about the benefits of conserving biodiversity. Ecosystem restoration is generally far more expensive than protecting the original ecosystem.

6. Direct and indirect drivers of biodiversity loss, such as intensification of agriculture and climate change, must be addressed . Possible actions include eliminating harmful subsidies and limiting the increase in nutrient levels in soil and water.

7. The success of urban greening projects in places like Singapore should inspire Irish planners and architects to bring green space into cities and towns, encouraging biodiversity and improving air quality and human health. 

Relevant Irish Government Departments and State agencies are required to prepare their own Biodiversity Action Plans to ensure and promote the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.


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