August 3rd, 2018
Community and environmental groups across Galway City are joining forces to create a festival to encourage the community to live more sustainably.
Galway City was awarded the European Green Leaf 2017 last year and was the inspiration for this festival, organised by the Galway City Community Network (GCCN).
The GCCN has been pushing for a “collaborative workshop” in the county to explore initiative in relation to Green Leaf themes, said Ann Irwin from Galway City Council.
One of the ideas that emerged was a festival of sustainability with the first “Loving Galway” Sustainability Festival now set to take place over ten days at the end of September.
The free event will focus on green and blue spaces, highlighting Galway’s unique environment of land, rivers and the sea, as well as hosting a flagship seminar to include climatologist Professor John Sweeney (Maynooth University).
Other activities will include a seminar on participatory planning hosted by Galway Environmental Network and GCCN, and a Zero Waste Youth Seminar hosted by Youth Work Ireland Galway.
Galway City Council provides environmental support annually by matching the Local Agenda 21 Environment Partnership Fund, with a total of €21,850 that is available this year for projects concerning topics like sustainability, climate change, waste, and biodiversity.
Ms Irwin said that the GCCN Environment Linkage Group is an “amazingly vibrant space with really active participation from a whole range of people interested in different aspects of the environment and sustainability”.
Counties across Ireland have councils creating similar events where likeminded people can connect.
Daniel Downey, Cavan County Council resource worker, told The Green News how environmental representatives within the Cavan Public Participation Network (PPN) recently hosted an event to create a network of gardeners in the area.
Locals from community gardens and gardening groups gathered on a bus, had the opportunity to network and socialize, and headed on a trip to Rossinver Organic Center.
Thanks to the field trip planned by the Cavan PPN, gardeners learned about techniques such as no-dig gardens, companion planting, and nnitrogen-fixing plants and utilizing plants as a way to combat pests rather than pesticides.
They also have a composting workshop planned for autumn, and a seed-share in winter.