This report has been prepared by the EPA on behalf of the Climate Research Coordination Group, September 2022
This fourth report presents a summary of the Climate Research Coordination Group’s activities in 2021.
Authors: Matthew Saunders, Gabriela Mihaela Afrasinei, Jesko Zimmerman, Alina Premrov, Kevin Black and Stuart Green, September 2022
Soils contain more than twice the amount of carbon held in the atmosphere, but globally approximately 1600 million tonnes of carbon are lost from the soil each year due to cultivation and land use. This research highlights how large geospatial datasets can provide an excellent source of land use information and can detect land use change events at both national and regional scales. The rule-based land use and soil inventory coupled with the soil cluster approach developed in this work could be implemented in current national land use mapping activities to enhance our ability to assess the impacts of land use and land use change on soil carbon stocks.
Authors: Peter Medway, Dug Cubie and Martin Le Tissier, August 2022
Climate research tells us that extreme weather events will become more frequent and severe. Climate change adaptation (CCA) focuses on the probable chronic long-term impacts likely to occur across multiple sectors. In contrast, emergency planning and disaster risk reduction (DRR) primarily aims to address acute short-term impacts. The project identifies how existing approaches to disaster risk reduction, disaster risk management (DRM) and CCA in Ireland are juxtaposed and concludes that identifying ways to promote coordination and align incentives, priorities and planning processes will facilitate a more holistic and comprehensive approach to DRM at all levels of government.
Authors: Mark Scott, Louise Burns, Mick Lennon and Oliver Kinnane, August 2022
Climate change risks present a clear challenge for Ireland’s built environment. Adaptation is the critical second pillar of climate action alongside mitigation. This needs an urgent whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach. There is significant scope for increasing policy coherency towards adaptation through the planning system, building control, building regulation performance requirements, industry standards and building design specifications.
Authors: Gerard Mullally, Alexandra Revez, Clodagh Harris, Niall Dunphy, Fionn Rogan, Edmond Byrne, Connor McGookin, Brian Ó Gallachóir, Paul Bolger, Barry O’Dwyer, Stephen Flood, Evan Boyle, James Glynn, John Barry and Geraint Ellis , July 2022
Ireland faces considerable challenges in transitioning to a net-zero carbon and climate resilient future. This research focused on the challenge of engaging citizens and communities in climate action while also recognising that new and novel approaches are required to enable the transition to climate resilience. The co-creation of the Deliberative Futures Toolkit together with local, scientific and policy communities, provides a resource that can be used by communities and policymakers.
Authors: Astrid Wingler, Fiona Cawkwell, Paul Holloway, Gourav Misra, Rubén de la Torre Cerro and Calum Sweeney, March 2022
The PhenoClimate project determined the impact of climate change on seasonal life cycle (phenological) events and the consequences for species interactions. For Irish woodlands, an advance of the growing season in spring was identified using satellite remote sensing. Arrival of migratory birds was found to advance too, however, instances in which migratory birds showed asynchrony with insect first flight dates were identified, suggesting that climate change can result in phenological mismatch.
Authors: Karen Deignan, Aideen O’Hora, Orlaith Delargy, Laura Heuston and Conor Morrow, February 2022
Climate change is already affecting Irish businesses and these impacts are likely to increase in severity. Our research identified material climate risks (pressures) for Ireland’s private sector. By raising awareness of climate risks and opportunities, this research can help the private sector identify and develop solutions to address the environmental and economic challenges that they face. This project can also inform the development of solutions to develop business-level (rather than sector-level) resilience and adaptation plans.
Authors: Florence Renou-Wilson, Kenneth A. Byrne, Raymond Flynn, Alina Premrov, Emily Riondato, Matthew Saunders, Killian Walz and David Wilson, January 2022
Irish bogs have been drastically altered by human activities and the sampled peat properties reflect the nature and magnitude of the impact of land use and management. A recognition of the heterogeneity found across Irish peat soils, together with an understanding of the relationships between key soil properties, are critical for developing effective strategies to reduce the carbon footprint of these degraded ecosystems. Our findings clearly support the need for a site-by-site approach for rewetting management schemes.
Authors: Ajinkya S. Mane and Bidisha Ghosh, December 2021
The “Eco-HDV” research project evaluated the impacts of adaptation of eco-driving programmes in the Irish heavy-duty vehicle fleet, focusing especially on the freight sector. The research identified perceptions and awareness of eco-driving training, reviewed the best eco-driving practices and analysed the possibilities of adaptation of eco-driving programmes. The project generated guidelines for the implementation of eco-driving programmes and other measures to reduce vehicular emissions from the Irish heavy-duty vehicle fleet.
Authors: Enda Murphy, Patrick Paul Walsh and Aparajita Banerjee, December 2021
This report contributes to a range of international and national policy areas, creating a positive feedback loop between policies for environmental SDG promotion, governance for the SDGs and integrated environmental policymaking. It provides an important evidence base for assessing national progress on the environmental SDGs relative to EU peer nations. This is the first time that Ireland’s progress on the SDGs has been assessed on an SDG target and indicator basis relative to peer nations.
Editors and Lead Authors: Walther C.A. Cámaro García and Ned Dwyer, August 2021
As an island on the western boundary of Europe facing the Atlantic Ocean, Ireland is ideally positioned to measure and assess ongoing climate change. The first Status of Ireland’s Climate report was published in 2013. This second status report provides an update, incorporating new datasets and analyses as well as reporting ongoing climate observations over the last 7 years.
Authors: Paul Leahy, Lucía Hermida Gonzalez, Kieran Hickey, Gerard Kiely, Myles Allen, Parvaneh Nowbakht and Adam Pasik, July 2021
Extreme weather events, such as heavy or prolonged rainfall events, droughts and heatwaves, have the potential to cause significant social and economic disruption in Ireland. The ClimAtt project has examined the state of the art in climate change attribution of extreme weather events. Met Éireann’s observational records have been used to test and validate several climate model datasets for attribution purposes. The most appropriate datasets and methods to use to investigate the influence of climate change on extreme weather events occurring in Ireland have been recommended.
This report has been prepared by the EPA on behalf of the Climate Research Coordination Group, July 2021
This third report presents a summary of the Climate Research Coordination Group’s activities in 2020.
Authors: Stephen Flood, Ned Dwyer and Jeremy Gault, June 2021
Adaptation action is now urgently needed to reduce the social, economic and environmental impacts of present and future climate change to ensure resilience to both extreme and slow-onset events under a changing climate. This project combines an analysis of international best practice and approaches to the development of climate adaptation indicators, co-designed by key stakeholder representatives from relevant state agencies and regional and national government, to identify a tailored suite of Ireland-relevant climate adaptation indicators. The co-design process identified a suite of 127 recommended indicators – 15 are climatological indicators, 23 are impact indicators, 32 are implementation indicators and 21 are outcome indicators. Ninety-one of these indicators were identified as priority.
Author: Eamon Haughey, May 2021
Land supports a range of ecosystem services including biodiversity and economic outputs in the agriculture and forestry sectors. This report identified pressures in the land system by analysing land use and outputs and greenhouse gas emissions associated with the land system. It identifies knowledge gaps in relation to national land use mapping, which currently limit the potential for regional analyses of land–climate interactions.
Authors: Páraic C. Ryan, Lara Hawchar, Owen Naughton and Mark G. Stewart, March 2021
Modern society relies on the effective functioning of critical infrastructure networks to provide public services, enhance quality of life and spur sustainable economic development. Part A of this report presents a framework and analysis aimed at identifying potential risks for the four main critical infrastructure sectors. Part B of the report was applied to part of the energy sector as an illustrative case study.
Authors: Meabh Gallagher, Bidroha Basu, Bidisha Ghosh, Md. Saniul Alam, Laurence Gill, BalzKamber and Aonghus McNabola, February 2021
Research was conducted to assess the contribution of diesel vehicle emissions to the concentrations of PM2.5 in Dublin. The major source identified was solid fuel burning, contributing 46-50% of the total mass recorded. The 2nd largest contributor at a roadside site was diesel vehicle emissions (22%) followed closely by road dust (19%). The 2nd largest source at a suburban site was soil (20%) followed closely by sea spray (14%).
Authors: Damien Martin and Colin O’Dowd, January 2021
The Atmospheric Composition and Climate Change (AC3) network is an established national research and monitoring infrastructure developed incrementally. It monitors greenhouse gases, short-lived climate forcers, and aerosol chemical and physical characteristics in line with best practice from pan-European and global monitoring programmes. This fellowship has enabled and sustained scientific operations for a national monitoring network.
Authors: Sabrina Dekker and Diarmuid Torney, January 2021
To date, Ireland’s climate change policy response has not delivered sufficient progress. The central objectives of this project were to construct a policy evaluation framework that builds on a standard EU evaluation framework and to undertake evaluations of climate change policies across all sectors using the framework, with a specific focus on key policies.
Authors: Julie Clarke, Enrique Acosta and Heidi Brede, January 2021
Climate change is happening on a global scale, and Ireland is seeing its detrimental effects. Increased stress owing to changing weather patterns and extreme storm events is and will have an impact on the transport infrastructure network. Developing resilient methodologies that quantify the social, economic and environmental costs of climate change impacts can support a decision-making framework and provide cost effective solutions.