According to Ireland’s National Biodiversity Plan 2017-2021, 91% of EU protected habitats in Ireland have unfavourable conservation status, some such habitats are peatlands, grasslands, coastal habitats and lakes.

Sustainable Development Goal 15 focuses on Life on Land and includes Target 15.5 ‘Take urgent and significant action to reduce the degradation of natural habitats, halt the loss of biodiversity and protect and prevent the extinction of threatened species’ which Ballyhoura Development and many of the community groups in Ballyhoura are actively working towards.

What can you do?

  • Plant a tree!

In conjunction with Easy Treesie and National Tree Week, Ballyhoura Development currently have native trees available for community groups to collect and plant. If you are interested in availing of this contact [email protected].

Read About Ballyhoura National Tree Week 2024

We are looking for your support in this by inviting you or your community to share images of local biodiversity with us by entering The Stop, Look and Listen photo competition. Not only could you win a prize, but we will be exhibiting a selection of these photographs at an event later in the Spring.

Stop, Look, Listen: Preserving Biodiversity! Photo Competition

  • Ballyhoura Development supports a thriving network of Tidy Towns groups across the Ballyhoura area.

It was established over thirty years ago and now includes 36 communities. Tidy Towns committees work together to make their communities attractive and welcoming. In recent years, the Tidy Towns competition has put an increased emphasis on biodiversity and sustainability. Tidy Towns group have responded positively to these changes and have started to play a leading role in championing these causes on a local level.

To find out more about your local Tidy Towns group or how to start your own, contact Rhiannon at [email protected]

Keep an eye on our events page and social media for details of upcoming workshops on topics associated with Life on Land, which are open to everyone.

Previous projects which Ballyhoura have worked on to achieve SDG 15 include the Barn Owls of Ballyhoura and European Innovation Partnership (EIP) projects:

  • The Parish Habitats and Biodiversity (PHAB) project saw 15 farmers from the Glenroe and Ballyorgan areas working with Ballyhoura Development to improve biodiversity on their farms and has been hailed as ‘a positive story’ and a possible model for future larger-scale EIP projects. Actions included 15 farmers plant 1,550m of hedgerow along with 95 fruit trees and 140 native trees; spread 585 tones of lime to reduce fertiliser use, install 15 owl boxes, 35 bird boxes and 3 ponds, as well as putting in 3 pasture pumps and 1 solar pump to help protect waterways.

  • The ‘Barn Owls of Ballyhoura' project was developed to highlight the valuable role that barn owls play in our environment and the actions that communities and individuals can take to support barn owls. As well as facilitating two workshops about barn owls’ ecology and conservation, this project focused on the work of The Barn Owl Project, actions that individuals can take to protect barn owls, and the erection of barn owl nesting boxes in 10 communities. As a result, knowledge and awareness around nurturing our local barn owl population has grown, with both individuals and communities interested and empowered to take more action to protect this important species and its habitat.

Find Out More About SDG Champions