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The GAA and the local authority sector, represented by the County and City Management Association (CCMA) announced on Friday, 24 January) an innovative new initiative pledging to work together to lead their communities in promoting sustainability and climate action.

The partnership will capitalise on the leadership roles both organisations have within their communities, and the potential they have to engage with citizens of all ages to promote sustainable local development, environmental awareness and climate action.

The partnership builds on the GAA’s status as a Sustainable Development Goal Champion and aligns with local government commitments under the National Climate Action Plan and Local Authorities’ Climate Action Charters.

A steering group, composed of representatives from the Local Authority sector, the GAA, LGFA and Camogie Association, have begun work on the development of a Green Club toolkit, which will be piloted in 2020 ahead of the roll-out of a National Green Club Support Plan in 2021.

The Green Club toolkit, which will be piloted across a small number of clubs throughout the country, will be focused on the key action areas of Energy & Water Efficiency, Biodiversity, Waste Management & Plastic Use and Transport

Sustainable Club and Community Partnership projects include:

  • Development of a Sustainable Club
  • Sustainable Club Workshops
  • Promotion and Support of Sustainable Energy Communities
  • A Sustainable Development Goal Action Module in the GAA/PDST TY Future Leaders Programme, with contributions across GAA/LGFA/Camogie Association input at all levels of the Mainstream Education System (with the Department of Education and Skills)
  • Green Procurement Guidelines and Support
  • Further Developing Croke Park as a World Exemplar Stadium in Sustainable Development
  • Alignment to Statutory Funding Streams

Speaking at the launch, Uachtaran CLG John Horan said, “An increasing number of clubs are seeking guidance in the area of sustainability, and our members are very anxious to play their part in the fight against climate change. The collaboration with the Local Authority Sector is an ideal partnership to help us to develop our clubs sustainability within and for communities and to reach people in every corner of Ireland with information that will help them to make changes in their own lives to support the effort against climate change and adapting to evolving challenges.”

Michael Walsh, CCMA Chairman said, “The GAA and local authorities both represent local leadership, community, legacy and vision. We each have relevant networks, knowledge, existing partners and facilities. Working together we can have huge impact and enable the necessary behavioural change in our communities.”

Ends                                                                                                              27 January 2020

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