“All it takes is an ounce of Cróga” is the Social Media campaign to publicise our Cróga Report. The Cróga Report gives a detailed analysis of carbon emissions in every activity sector in Leitrim. We decided to share the essential points through images as follows…
Farms in Leitrim have the lowest Climate Impact in the country. That’s because Leitrim’s farming system is extensive and the majority of farmland qualifies as High Nature Value.
Still, more can be done to further enhance biodiversity and mitigate emissions.
Leitrim householders, living mostly in detached or semi-detached houses with no gas network, resort to stand-alone heating systems to keep warm. Oil is by far the main heating fuel, being used by 66% of households.
Oil is a nasty fossil fuel, its combustion responsible for the current climate crisis and emitting local pollutants involved in respiratory diseases. Cleaner alternatives exist and are being made available by SEAI grants, but householders still have to pay for upfront costs and go through a lot of papers. It’s time that retrofitting houses becomes accessible for all.
Leitrim car traffic volume is 15% higher than the national average. People rely more on their private vehicles, whether they are driving kids at school, going to the workplace, shopping, for leisure activities or other errands.
While private vehicles are still the easiest choice for moving between rural towns and villages, the lack of an extensive public transport network doesn’t help. In many rural areas, public transport alternative is not even an option. In other cases, the lack of reliability, suitable timetables, proper advertisement and signalling, and not least the high trip price, discourage the use of buses and trains.
The situation could be improved if there was a review of rural bus fleets and timetables together with the launch of a car-sharing/carpooling platform, State-backed to build user trust.
Basically, we are talking about the equivalent emissions of more than 9,000 cars!
WindFarms are still very debated in Ireland. Although some may argue that noise from the turbines is significant and interferes with day to day life, many researchers combat this idea. It has been proven that the perceived noise from the turbines depends on the individual and how sensitive their hearing is.
Furthermore, noise perception is directly linked with the person’s acceptance of the turbines. Those who are against wind development tend to be more annoyed by their presence than those who favour Wind Energy.
Wetlands are a strategic but often overlooked ally in the fight against the climate crisis. They are extraordinary pieces of hybrid land, a life rich realm suspended between water and soil. The most familiar wetland type in this part of Ireland is the blanket bog. Only a small portion of mountain bogs are found to be in good health in Leitrim, the rest being in poor maintenance conditions.
Bogs provide many valuable ecosystem services, such as water retention, water filtration, biodiversity and carbon storage. Peat forming takes time: 1mm per year, about the same rate of growth as coral. Humans have been exploiting the bogs for centuries for another service they provide: fuel.
Other than ecological reasons, nowadays there are many sanitary reasons not to disturb bogs: burning peat releases a lot of toxic compounds that harm the human respiratory system. A bog that has been turf-cut loses its carbon-storing function, turning into a net emitter. If we leave the bogs intact (planting trees on them is one of the most pernicious things to do) and we engage in rewetting efforts, they will build up peat once again, returning to their natural state.
Cróga means “Brave” in Irish and is the acronym of “Climate-Resilient Opportunities for Generations Ahead”.
Cróga is the ongoing GEAI climate action initiative.
Cróga does independent research, facilitates inclusive community dialogue and animates bottom-up policies and actions. The aim is to pave the way for a Just Transition to a Net-Zero county that enhance the livelihoods of present and future rural communities.
Cróga is the first initiative of its kind, employing an original county-centred methodology to account and tackle our Greenhouse Gases (GHG) emissions, domestically. The same methodology is transferrable to other sub-national areas.