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Northern Ireland Environment Link Logo
 

News

 

Events

 

Oct 2019 right left

 

9th IUCN UK Peatland Programme Conference – Peatlands: Investing in the Future

Tuesday 1st October
The Europa Hotel, Belfast
See website for details

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Comber Greenway Task Day

Saturday 5th October
Billy Neill crossing at 9am, Dundonald or on the greenway under North Road bridge at 9.30am, East Belfast
Free

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NILGA Changing Places: Planning, Place–shaping and Place–making in NI

Tuesday 8th October
Killyhevlin Hotel, Enniskillen
£60

Northern Ireland Energy Forum 2019

Tuesday 8th October
La Mon, Belfast
See website for details

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Citigroup Environmental Expo

Thursday 10th October
Citigroup, Titanic Quarter, Belfast
Free

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Grass Roots AGM

Saturday 12th October
Newtownbreda Presbyterian Church Hall, Ormeau Road, Belfast
Free

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CEDaR Training Course – Woodlice

Saturday 19th October
Crawfordsburn Country Park
Free

Maintaining a Young Hedge

Sunday 20th October
Kilmacrew House near Banbridge
Free

The Future of Food Packaging

Monday 21st October
CAFRE Loughry Campus, Cookstown BT80 9AA
Free

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Inaugural QUB Sustainability Lecture

Wednesday 23rd October
Peter Froggatt Centre/0G/007, Queen’s University Belfast
Free

Water Framework Directive Stakeholder Conference 2019

Wednesday 23rd October
College of Agriculture Food & Rural Enterprise (CAFRE), Greenmount Campus, 45 Tirgracy Road, Antrim BT41 4PS
Free

CEDaR Training Course – Grassland Fungi

Thursday 24th October
Magilligan Field Centre

Enough is Enough – The Rise and Rise of Food Poverty

Friday 25th October
TBC, Belfast
Free

Scarecrow Festival

Saturday 26th October
Castleward
Normal Admission

Hidden Autumn Estate

Saturday 26th October
Crom
Adult £15

Spooky Springhill

Sunday 27th October
Springhill Moneymore
Normal Admission. NT Members and under 5’s free.

Valuing Nature Annual Conference 2019

Monday 28th October
Royal Society, London
Free

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Biodiversity

Biodiversity in Northern Ireland sits within a broader international context, notably the Convention on Biological Diversity which came into force over 20 years ago and its associated targets and the EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy.

Biodiversity

One of the aims of the Northern Ireland Biodiversity Strategy (DoENI, 2014) was to halt biodiversity loss by 2016. A review conducted by the Northern Ireland Biodiversity Group (2009) reported that “progress has been made with the processes and mechanisms of halting biodiversity loss” but “there is little hard evidence that the deterioration of Northern Ireland’s biodiversity is actually slowing down”. This is supported by the State of the Environment report (Northern Ireland Environment Agency, 2013).

Pressures on biodiversity in Northern Ireland stem from multiple factors including climate change, land abandonment, infrastructure development, invasive species and agricultural intensification.

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The State of Nature 2019 report has revealed that 41% of UK species studied have declined, 26% have increased and 33% show little change since 1970, while 133 species assessed have already been lost from our shores since 1500.

Examples of invasive alien species include Japanese knotweed, floating pennywort and Zebra mussels.

To date the Northern Ireland Environment Agency has declared a total of 360 Areas of Special Scientific Interest, 6.7% of the NI land mass.

Some habitats are particularly vulnerable to climate change; the risks are clearest for montane habitats (to increased temperature), wetlands (to changes in water availability) and coastal habitats (to sea–level rise).

There is strong evidence that climate change is already affecting UK biodiversity. Impacts are expected to increase as the magnitude of climate change increases.

There are currently 65 U.K. Priority Habitats, with 51 of these in Northern Ireland.

There are currently 481 Priority Species in Northern Ireland.

Since the 1950s, 41,000 hectares of countryside has been lost to urban development, with an unquantified loss of biodiversity.

The total land area of Northern Ireland is 14,160 km2 (1,416,000 ha). Approximately 6.6% of the land area of Northern Ireland is designated as ASSI for nature conservation, including earth science interest.

As of 31 March 2018, a total of 111,159 hectares across 394 sites have been declared as Areas of Special Scientific Interest (ASSI), 85,900 hectares across 57 sites as Special Areas of Conservation (SACs), 114,600 hectares across 17 sites as Special Protection Areas (SPAs) and 77,700 hectares across 21 sites as Ramsar sites (areas of wetland and waterfowl conservation).