Catchment News

John Walsh, Climate Champion

| in Get involved, Stories

In August 2017, Dorothy Stewart and Micheál Ó Cinnéide from the EPA had the privilege of visiting John Walsh at his home in Mountain Road, overlooking Clonmel, County Tipperary. He welcomed us warmly and we had a marvellous chat about his family history, his decades of work with Bulmers in Clonmel, and his cycling trip to Lourdes.

At the age of 99, John decided he needed a car, but he was concerned about the environment, so he bought a Nissan Leaf. He was shown driving his electric vehicle on the recent RTE programme ‘Too Old To Drive’. As John told us: “I was not entirely happy doing the programme, as I realised it would show me as car dependent. In fact, a bike was my primary mode of local transport until I reached 99. Since then, I do need the car for social contact and to get to where I can safely walk. The walking is the only serious problem, as the footpath on the busy Mountain Road was merged with the carriageway”.

It was clear that John has a great sense of energy and charisma. He embraces life and is open to change. When we asked him if he would like to be named as a Climate Champion for the EPA, he smiled and said he would be delighted, so long as there aren’t too many speeches involved!

John’s life-long commitment to being active and to looking after the environment is an inspiration and at almost 102 years old is testament to the health and well-being benefits that accrue from active engagement with green and blue spaces.

Working together with An Taisce and other agencies, we can encourage more Climate Champions like John in towns and villages throughout Ireland. Micheál Ó Cinnéide, Director, EPA www.climateambassador.ie www.coolplanetexperience.org

Who is involved?

Quite simply, everyone in Ireland has a role to play. This can be from something as simple as making sure you don’t pollute your local stream, or a local community working together to establish a Rivers Trust to enhance the rivers and lakes in their area, to a Government Department or Agency helping a Minister implement a new policy to help protect and enhance all our waterbodies.

This website has been developed and is maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency, and is a collaboration between the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Local Authority Waters and Communities Office.

LAWCO

Local Authority Waters Programme

The Local Authority Waters Programme coordinates the efforts of local authorities and other public bodies in the implementation of the River Basin Management Plan, and supports local community and stakeholder involvement in managing our natural waters, for everyone’s benefit.

EPA

Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4,829 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives and measures for each.

DECLG

Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government

The Department is responsible for making sure that the right policies, regulations and resources are in place to implement the Water Framework Directive, and developing a River Basin Management Plan and Programme of Measures that will be implemented after public consultation and sign off by the Minister.