Catchment News

Nature-based solutions: from theory to application – watch Engineers Ireland webinars

This Engineers Ireland Nature-based Solutions webinar series is structured on a universal design and delivery process. It will walk through the process and provide a guide on how to identify and respond to conditions as a project typically proceeds, identifying those stakeholders and project disciplines that should be involved at each stage.

Our society continues to adapt to innovations in technology, long-established patterns disrupted by climate change, and our desire to make healthier lifestyle choices, amongst other factors. Our infrastructure, at all scales, needs to evolve to take advantage of these changes, and the broad range of built environment stakeholders all have a vital role to play in shaping these new landscapes and driving this transition.

Why employ nature-based solutions?

  • Improves climatic resilience in the face of increased risk of flooding and extreme temperature
  • Increases biodiversity
  • Creates more sustainable and climate-adaptive urban neighbourhoods through the allocation of space to natural landscaping

These techniques, working with the prevailing geography, can minimise environmental impact, and sensitively applied will strengthen the best qualities of a locality, enhancing amenity and popularity.

Series Objectives

The series will draw different interests over the four sessions, with some participants present for all four. However, there is a shifting emphasis in terms of skill, discipline and relationships as a typical project progresses through the design stages. 

After the series, the participants should have gained: 

  • An understanding of the value and benefits of Nature Based Urban Infrastructure Design & Delivery
  • An overview of how to appraise site conditions to determine options and concepts 
  • Insight into key considerations when developing a concept which is then used for consent and statutory assessment purposes
  • An appreciation of the prevailing Statutory processes and design stages in terms of design detail, content and documentation
  • Insight into examples of employing these techniques into the design of engineering projects
  • Logging and documenting the process for ongoing operation, management, and knowledge sharing
  • Networking and forging supply chain relationships

Webinar 1: Projects from concept to planning stage

This session concerns projects from concept to planning stage, and is chaired by Conor Galvin of the Office of Public Works. Speakers include Peter Leonard, Seán Fitzsimons, Dr Fran Igoe, John Stack and Michael Goss.

Webinar 2 – Projects at Detailed Design Stage

This session concerns projects at detailed design stage, and is chaired by Finola O’Driscoll of the National Transport Authority. Speakers include Pádraig O’Gorman, Conor Geraghty, Aidan O’Connell and Alan Costello.

Webinar 3: Projects at construction stage

This session concerns projects at detailed design stage, and is chaired by Stephen O’Malley of Civic Engineers. Speakers include Habib Khan, Anthony McCLoy, Kevin Barton, Gareth Toolan and Pádraig O’Gorman.

Webinar 4: Moving the conversation from theory to application

This session concerns projects at detailed design stage, and is chaired by Adrian Conway, formerly Executive Manager (Engineering) Dublin City Council responsible for urban drainage, surface water, flood risk management and related matters Speakers include Seán Fitzsimons, Isla Jackson and Ian Titherington.

Learn more:

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 water bodies.

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 Programme.


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.


Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4,842 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives for each.


Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage

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 to protect and restore our waters.