Full council: May 2022
Councillor Vanessa Liston: That recognising the importance of active community engagement and empowerment in reaching our 2030 climate targets, the council starts a process to co-develop a strategy that will support, harness and engage with citizen science in the development of relevant policies and actions.
Report: The importance of community engagement and empowerment is recognised through various processes that support, harness and engage citizen science in development of policies and actions. In the arena of Climate Action, Kildare County Council as signatory to the Climate Action Charter has agreed to ‘…helping to build and implement a sustainable localised citizen engagement…’. The use of the public consultation and associated wide knowledge base assisted in many strategies and actions, including:
• The selection of Maynooth as the nominated Decarbonisation Zone.
• The Local Just Transition Plan for West Kildare embodies citizen
engagement. Citizens were fulling engaged and not only assisted with but provided local actions to create and establish sustainable communities into the future with the ethos of ‘no one is left behind’.
• The Climate Innovation Fund enables citizen science to be funded to reach our collective climate goals in the form prescribed by the citizen or grouping associated.
• The Community Climate Action Fund is to be made available shortly with guidance and financial supports to administrate the fund to actively undertake climate actions in the community.
The Climate Action Office is available to discuss the matter further.
Issued by: Mr J Boland, Director of Services, Water Services, Environment and Climate Action
Discussion and outcome: Councillor Liston stated she wished to highlight the opportunity to engage with citizen science and using the information that was gathered in this regard. She confirmed this method had been recognised by the European Commission in numerous different areas and platforms and sought the councils support in developing a policy around citizen science where all citizens could feel heard and supported.
Mr Boland welcomed the timely motion noting it tied in with the bottom-up approach been taken by the council via its community Climate Action Plans. He stated he was happy to do some more research in the area and refer it to the Climate Action SPC for further consideration. Councillor Clear agreed with the Director stating he was happy to give further consideration to it at the SPC.
Resolved on the proposal of Councillor Liston, seconded by Councillor Killeen and agreed by the members present, the report was noted, and the motion be referred to the Climate Action SPC for further consideration.