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Kilrush aspires to be Ireland’s most sustainable town by 2025

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Becoming Ireland’s most sustainable town is the future aspiration for Kilrush following the publication of a recent plan which spans over 117 pages.

Made up of seven goals, ten objectives and eighty four actions all with the common aim of creating a sustainable town, the plan was born from the initiative of the Kilrush Tidy Towns with the work subsequently led by native Chris Dixon who lives in London and holds a Masters in Environmental Policy from UCD.

Launched earlier this month, the front cover sets out their target of becoming the most sustainable town in Ireland by 2025 which is intended to have the subsequent effect of creating further opportunities and encourage people to set up homes and businesses there.

Secretary of Kilrush Tidy Towns, Paul Edson outlined what prompted the idea for the plan. “As an area of tidy towns which was about waste minimisation, sustainability, we wanted to get a full understanding and grasp of how we could best achieve creating a sustainable environment in Kilrush, we thought the best thing to do would be to employ somebody who was an expert in that area”.

Edson, who is the Managing Director of The Family Store has observed “a keenness and a willingness” to make it a success. With 286 responses to the public consultation survey, the twelve person committee were pleased with the input. “We thought the response was really good. It was an online survey, that immediately rules out a lot of people who are unable to do that and you’ve got the youth and children, that’s the next generation we will be targeting, they are surrounded by the whole sustainability vision as they are growing up so it will become natural to them whereas for everyone else it’s a matter of trying to adjust their lifestyle to become more sustainable”.

Businesses in the town have also rowed in with their efforts. “We feel that the businesses in town are keen to become involved, we’re very optimistic it will be a success,” the Wakefield native told The Clare Echo. He is one of twelve people on the sustainability committee all with different roles in dealing with various groups to assist with the implementation of the plan.

“I’m sure there are other communities working hard to become a more sustainable community, if you’re setting yourself a target you should always set the highest bar of what you want to be the best at doing it, if we don’t achieve that then it’s probably our own fault. The plan is there, if we can achieve all the objectives and actions in the plan then we would have done our very best and we could say that we would be maybe not the most but one of the most sustainable communities in Ireland and that’s our target. As long as we have tried to implement the plan the best we can then we can hold our heads up high to say we’ve done our best and we’re happy with the result so now it is up to us to knuckle down and implement the actions that are in the plan to make it a success”.

Newmarket-on-Fergus native, Páraic McMahon is a freelance journalist and broadcaster currently working for numerous national and local publications including The Clare Echo, The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent, The Irish Times, RTÉ, TheJournal.ie, The42.ie. A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to - paraic@clareecho.ie

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