Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Questions (279, 280)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

279. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform if the necessary financial assistance will be provided to Fingal County Council to tackle the alarming rate of coastal erosion that is occurring at the Burrow, Portrane, County Dublin; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31795/19]

View answer

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

280. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the progress made to date in the preparation of a national coastal erosion strategy and plan; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31796/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Public)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 279 and 280 together.

In respect of coastal erosion at the Burrow, Portrane, County Dublin, I am advised that Fingal County Council is leading on this issue, as it is a matter for local authorities in the first instance to assess and address problems of coastal erosion in their areas. Where necessary, Local Authorities may put forward proposals to relevant central Government Departments, including the OPW, for funding of appropriate measures depending on the infrastructure or assets under threat.

In 2018, in response to serious coastal erosion problems at The Burrow, Portrane, Fingal County Council implemented temporary interim emergency measures to protect properties at risk. Funding of €456,464 was approved under the OPW Minor Flood Mitigation Works and Coastal Protection Scheme for these works.

Consultants appointed by Fingal County Council are currently assessing options for a longer term permanent solution for the Portrane Peninsula. I have also been informed by Fingal County Council that the assessment of options will be followed by extensive public consultation and environmental assessment and consent processes, which are likely to take several months to conclude. The Council has further confirmed that it is probable therefore that the study and the associated approved plan for the peninsula will take at least until the middle of 2020 to complete.

If a viable option is identified, the Council may submit a further application for funding to the OPW or other Government Departments as appropriate.

With regard to the preparation of a national coastal erosion strategy and plan, discussions are ongoing between a number of Government Departments and agencies in relation to managing those strategic issues associated with coastal erosion.