Senator Pippa Hackett, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, visited the property of Joe Roche of Ballinacarrig farm, Ballymoney, County Wexford, on February 2 to commemorate World Wetlands Day. World Wetlands Day is observed annually to draw attention to wetlands.
Joe is a dairy farmer who participates in the Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine-funded Enhancing Biodiversity in the Ballymoney Stream Catchment (EIP) project. To reduce water flow entering his stream, Joe constructed a pond and restored a previously drained wetland area through which a stream travels. The combined measures implemented in a single year have led to a substantial decrease in water flow and increased biodiversity, thus demonstrating that improving water quality, contributing to carbon storage, and increasing biodiversity while sustaining a profitable dairy business is possible.
Senator Hackett emphasised the importance of preserving and restoring wetlands and was delighted to see the wetland on Joe’s farm as well as to learn about the EIP team’s invaluable efforts in increasing public awareness regarding these critically important ecosystems. She also stated that it is an excellent example of a local community, including farmers and non-farmers, cooperating on environmental matters. You can find more information about Irish wetlands and events here.