I have called on the Government to redefine the meaning of an emergency to allow certain works to proceed without undue delay during the planning stage.
In Ireland we have witnessed the damage caused by flooding over the last number of weeks and the devastation that it causes to properties, farms, roads, and the environment.
“We also have a housing emergency, but we are still battling with the multitude of rules regulations and EU directives whilst people are homeless and young people cannot access affordable housing.
Projects are being delayed but if we redefine flooding and housing as emergencies then we can get on with the works in the interest of the common good.
We see first hand the damages that have been foisted on the Shannon callows because of ongoing summer flooding and the disappearance of so much wildlife, yet we seem to be handcuffed to rules and the Habitats Directives which are counterproductive and are destroying nature instead of protecting it. Yet there is no action to rectify the problems even though the solutions are staring us in the face.
I see first hand the inability of State Agencies, Government Departments and Local Authorities to progress flood relief measures and housing projects and millions of taxpayer’s money is spent years trying to overcome the many challenges put in place as a direct result of the EU Directives and Climate Action Plans.
The Government have an opportunity to define an emergency to include flooding, housing and health facilities in the new planning legislation being introduced to ensure that we can effectively and speedily protect our people, property, and our environment”.