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  • Northside East

Minister hears about coastal erosion fears

Thursday, 8th February, 2018 8:00am
Minister hears about coastal erosion fears
Minister hears about coastal erosion fears

Shauna Bowers

A GOVERNMENT minister recently met local residents in Portrane who are concerned about coastal erosion and flooding.

Minister of State with special responsibility for the Office of Public Works (OPW) and flood prevention, Kevin Moran, who spoke with the Coastal Liaison Group and locals, expressed his support for the methods which Fingal County Council have employed to tackle the issue.

This is the second time a Minister of State visited the Burrow in Portrane regarding the erosion of the coast.

The issue of coastal erosion has been a long-standing issue for local residents. Last year, several more metres of the Portrane coastline slipped into the sea. This resulted in two emergency motions being passed in order to try and preserve the coastline and prevent the erosion from breaching the road.

Raymond Brett of the Coastal Liaison Group explained the concerns of the residents to Minister Moran. Mr Brett emphasised the urgent need for coherent national policies and initiatives to assist the council and other agencies to deal with coastal erosion.

A lot of money has been invested in the past to try and preserve the beachline in Portrane. Some €57,800 was spent on a Coastal Erosion Risk Management Study of Portrane and Rush in 2012 by Fingal County Council.

In 2014, funding of €200,000 was also provided by the OPW for repair works to damaged coastal protection infrastructure which included Burrow beach.

Cllr Adrian Henchy (FF), a member of the coastal liaison committee, is delighted that Minister Moran is paying attention to the issue but he feels locals want less talking and more action.

“There obviously is progress being made but it’s painfully slow,” Cllr Henchy said. “At this stage, a lot of Portrane people want to see a bit of action. They want to see some shovels in the ground and some work being done because I don’t know how many ministers have been out at this stage.

“I think the issue is at a Government level, they don’t have a coastal erosion management policy. So the angle they’re going at now is the flooding risk. They’re looking at flood risk barriers on the landside of the beach and the sooner that can be done the better.”

Fingal County Council said the visit provided great insight into what is needed.

“They (local residents) emphasised the urgent need for coherent national policies and initiatives to assist the council and other agencies to deal with coastal erosion,” a spokesperson for the council told Northside People.  

“The Minister responded by expressing his support for the initiatives currently underway in Fingal.”  

Meanwhile, Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Mary Camley, said coastal erosion in the area is something that the council takes very seriously.

“Fingal’s coastline is hugely important to its residents as well as those who visit from other areas,” Mayor Camley said.

“The Minister’s visit is significant as it helps to raise awareness of the problems caused by coastal erosion. 

“It also assists Fingal County Council and the Coastal Liaison Group in their efforts to adopt a policy to resolve the issue and I look forward to seeing the progress that will be made.”

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