Thursday, 14 November 2019

Ceisteanna (26)

James Browne


26. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the position regarding coastal protection in County Wexford, particularly at Ballygeary and Rosslare Harbour; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46061/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Public)

I am advised that, in relation to coastal protection/erosion generally, it is a matter in the first instance for local authorities to identify and prioritise problems along their coastlines.  Where viable solutions are available, Local Authorities may undertake works using their own resources or, if appropriate, apply for funding to the Office of Public Works or other Government Departments, having regard to the economic assets and infrastructure at risk and to be protected.

In this regard, the OPW Minor Flood Mitigation Works & Coastal Protection Scheme provides funding to Local Authorities to undertake minor flood mitigation or coastal protection works or studies, costing less than €0.75 million each, to address localised flooding and coastal protection problems within their administrative areas. Funding for coastal erosion risk management studies may also be applied for under this scheme. Funding of up to 90% of the cost is available for projects which meet the eligibility criteria including a requirement that the proposed measures are cost beneficial. The OPW has published guidelines for coastal erosion risk management measures and funding applications under the Minor Flood Mitigation Works and Coastal Protection Scheme, available on the OPW website.

I am advised that OPW has not received an application under this scheme for the area mentioned in the Deputy’s question, but I understand works in this area are being addressed by a project commissioned directly by Irish Rail.

I am further advised that a detailed study commissioned by Wexford County Council, which fully investigated the problem of coastal erosion and flood risk at Rosslare Strand, is nearing completion.  This study examined the full range of management options to address the issue, and a submission based on the completed study findings will be made shortly by the Council to the OPW in relation to coastal protection proposals for the Rosslare Strand area.