New public sector duty will strengthen national action on biodiversity

Date Released: Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Ireland’s fourth National Biodiversity Action Plan (NBAP) will carry significant weight following the commencement of new legislation. The Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2023, which commenced in November 2023, will require all public service bodies, including government departments, agencies and local authorities to integrate biodiversity into their plans, policies and programmes.

This announcement by Minister for Nature, Heritage and Electoral Reform, Malcolm Noonan TD, comes ahead of the launch of Ireland’s new National Biodiversity Action Plan in early 2024. Ireland is a signatory to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, a global treaty with 196 members, including EU Member States and the European Union. The treaty is implemented through national strategies and action plans around the world.

Minister Noonan said:

“The rich diversity of species, habitats and ecosystems that we have in Ireland is our most precious resource and it is in crisis. I am starting this work with real intent by enshrining our national response to this crisis in legislation.

“This new development will empower all of us in the public sector to lead by example. I look forward to announcing the detail of our fourth National Biodiversity Action Plan early in the new year.”    

Ireland’s fourth NBAP will build on the achievements of previous plans, but aims to go even further in progressing conservation, restoration and sustainable use of biodiversity in Ireland.  

The Plan has been the subject of significant effort over the last two years. The interdepartmental Biodiversity Working Group, led by the National Parks and Wildlife Service, worked collaboratively on the preparation of this Plan with the support of stakeholders across government.