Mayo venues recognised for their GAA Green Clubs work
A new GAA Green Club Toolkit was launched today in Croke Park and will be freely available to all GAA, LGFA and Camogie Association units and members to support the implementation of simple sustainability actions across the five areas of energy, water, waste, biodiversity, and travel and transport.
The following Mayo clubs and grounds were recognised at the Green Club Toolkit launch today in Croke Park for their participation in phase one of the GAA Green Club programme: Ballina Stephenites and Connacht GAA Centre of Excellence, Bekan (regional venue).
The GAA Green Club Toolkit is the culmination of two years of collaboration between the GAA and the local authority sector, led by the County and City Management Association (CCMA), on a project to support sustainability and climate action in clubs and communities.
The GAA-CCMA partnership led to the establishment of the GAA Green Club Programme, which saw over 30 clubs from across 17 counties participate in phase one of the GAA’s first ever national grassroots sustainability initiative.
The toolkit, which offers clear and practical advice to Gaelic games clubs on how to engage in green and sustainable actions, contains applied and engaging case studies from phase one of the Green Clubs initiative.
Green Clubs were thanked at the launch for their contribution to the development of the toolkit, with each club presented with a plaque in recognition of their participation.
Expert input from organisations and agencies across the island of Ireland, including the SEAI, Action Renewables, LAWPro, Irish Water, NI Water, the Regional Waste Management Offices, the National Biodiversity Data Centre, RSPB NI, the NTA, the RSA, Keep NI Beautiful and Sustainable NI, was crucial to the development of the toolkit.
Expressions of interest for the next phase of the GAA Green Club Programme were opened at the toolkit launch. An additional 75 clubs from across the 32 counties will be selected to participate in phase two of the GAA Green Club Programme, which will run from 2023 to 2024.
The GAA Green Club Programme is supported by the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications, and was featured as a case study in the recently launched Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) National Implementation Plan 2022-2024.
GAA president Larry McCarthy said at the launch: “The GAA is a games organisation but it is also an organisation built on our commitment to the communities that our clubs represent. This Green Clubs Toolkit will support our members to ensure that our extensive network of facilities at club and county level are equipped to follow best practice across the five pillars of energy, water, waste, biodiversity, and travel and transport, and to ensure we play our part as community leaders in environmental sustainability.
“After two years of hard work, I want to thank all the organisation who collaborated on this initiative and look forward to the Green Club Toolkit being put into action by clubs at home and abroad.”
Eamon Ryan, the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, added: “The Department of the Environment, Climate, and Communications is delighted to support the GAA in its Green Club Programme. The GAA is at the heart of every community and parish in the country. Climate change is often seen as a global challenge but it’s very much a local challenge, something that we can all do something about – right here, in our parish, in our clubs.
“The GAA Green Club Toolkit is an invaluable tool that identifies practical local solutions to this global challenge. It works because it doesn’t section climate action off – it stitches it into every day life, every day sport, every day community development and enrichment.
“The leadership shown by the GAA at national, regional and local level is captured in the inspiring case studies that bring this excellent resource to life. I’d like to acknowledge the work that all the contributors made to this resource and applaud their success in translating the sustainable development goals into meaningful action through the Green Clubs Toolkit. I look forward to following the positive impact that the Green Club Programme makes in clubs and communities across Ireland.”
Speaking at the launch in Croke Park, Liam Bergin, Dublin City Council and member of the CCMA Climate Action Waste and Transport Networks Committee, said: “The Green Clubs Programme has been supported by the local authority sector since its inception, with Carlow County Council as a sustainable development goals champion, and we are delighted that the expertise of the Climate Action Regional Offices (CAROs), the Regional Waste Offices and the Local Authority Water Protection Offices (LAWPros) working with other expert partners has contributed to developing the supports and guidance for clubs in this toolkit which is being launched today.”
For more information visit gaa.ie/greenclub.