[Update 6/July] @IrishWater issues Conservation Order (hosepipe ban): 8am Fri 6/July->midnight Tue 31/July as drought continues

Irish Water appealing to everyone to conserve water as drought conditions continues across the country and National Water Conservation Order Comes into effect

Driest June on record in the Phoenix Park since 1850 with Met Éireann forecasting drought conditions to continue for the foreseeable future

We thank the public for their conservation efforts so far and we urge them to continue to conserve water to help protect water supplies now and over the coming months

(Issued Friday, 6 July 2018) Irish Water is appealing to everyone to conserve water as drought conditions continue across the country. The National Water Conservation Order came into effect today at 8am and is currently in place until midnight on the 31 July 2018. Due to depleting water levels in rivers, lakes and ground water sources which supply our water treatment plants the scope of this Order is being kept under review.


It will take sustained rainfall over many weeks and even months to replenish raw water levels in rivers, lakes and groundwater sources and treated drinking water levels in our storage reservoirs. Irish Water will continue to analyse water consumption levels nationally over the weekend and early next week to assess demand for water with the National Water Conservation Order in place. At the same time, we are monitoring the continued fall in water levels in our sources.

Following this analysis we will review if any additional measures will need to be put in place next week to further conserve water. Our objective is to balance service levels now with the risks of future failure. The current average water consumption demand in the Greater Dublin Area is 580 million litres per day, though down on the peak levels last week and within the safe production capacity of the plants. We continue to model the future scenarios for our raw water reserves in the Liffey and to evaluate whether further reductions are needed to avoid greater shortages later in the year.

We have 81 water schemes at risk of drought and water restrictions are in place in a further 27 locations.

Speaking about the need for continued water conservation Irish Water’s Corporate Affairs Manager Kate Gannon said

“We are really grateful for the measures that people have taken to conserve water so far and we hope that the National Water Conservation Order (hosepipe ban) will continue to make people more mindful of their responsibilities and the impact their water usage is having on their neighbours and communities. We know that the vast majority of people are supporting the ban, though we have reports of around 40 incidents of hosepipe usage in contravention of  it and we again appeal to those people to comply with these essential minimum measures to safeguard our water supplies.

“Our Drought Management team are meeting daily to assess and analyse water demand and consumption levels for every area in the country. As water levels continue to deplete in rivers and lakes and groundwater sources run dry, we will assess if further restrictions are required to help protect water supplies now and for the months ahead. Met Éireann has forecast that high temperatures will remain for the foreseeable future and this highlights the need for everyone to play their part and conserve water as much as possible, to follow our advice and tips and to comply with the Water Conservation Order in place.”



Irish Water issues National Water Conservation Order commonly referred to as a hosepipe ban from 8am on Friday, 6 July to midnight on Tuesday 31 July as a drought continues across the country

We thank the public for their conservation efforts so far and we urge them to continue to conserve water to help protect water supplies now and over the coming months

Met Éireannadvised that there has been little or no rain over the last 30 days, with an average soil moisture deficit of 60mm meaning even if it did rain, no water would reach our water sources for at least a week, as it will be absorbed by the ground


(Statement below issued by Irish Water, Wednesday, 4 July 2018)

Irish Water has confirmed that a National Water Conservation Ordercommonly referred to as a hosepipe ban will be in place from 8am on Friday, 6 July until midnight on Tuesday, 31 July 2018 for all domestic public water supplies and commercial premises for non-commercial activities e.g. watering gardens attached to a business premises. The scope of this Order is the same as the one applied to the Greater Dublin Area (GDA) on Monday, 2 July 2018. Irish Water may review the scope of both over the coming weeks.

The order has been issued due to the continued drought conditions and to help protect water supplies now and over the coming months. Met Éireann has advised that there has been little or no rain over the last 30 days and predictions show no significant rainfall is likely for at least a further week, meaning deepening drought conditions.

High levels of sunlight means significant evaporation levels on water sources. The average soil moisture deficit is currently 60mm nationally which means even if it did rain, no water would reach our water sources as it would be absorbed by the ground. The continuation of these drought conditions nationally is putting pressure on water sources as rivers, lakes and groundwater levels drop.

On average demand across all water resources nationally has increased by 15%, and given the environmental pressures on the aquifers and waterbodies, this cannot be sustained for any period of time. Due to soil moisture conditions, smaller groundwater sites in particular may take many months to recover. The National Water Conservation Order has the potential to suppress any non-essential increases in demand during this period, and prevent increased abstraction at a time when the raw water sources are least able to support these volumes.Irish Water thanks the public for their conservation efforts to date and we continue to encourage and support the public in their efforts to reduce usage. We are grateful for all measures that have been taken in homes and businesses.Irish Water’s top priority during the current dry period is to protect our water supply for use in homes and businesses in the coming weeks and months. As demand continues to outstrip supply and the warm weather looks set to continue, Irish Water has taken the extra step to use the legal options open to us. Section 56 (16) of the Water Services Act 2007 allows for an effective ‘hosepipe ban’.The Water Conservation Order (hosepipe ban) will be in place until midnight on Tuesday, 31 July for domestic users and for non-commercial use by commercial bodies. Irish Water will keep the situation under review and may have to extend the period of time the order is in place.

Water Conservation Order


The prohibited uses are as follows:

Use of water drawn through a hosepipe or similar apparatus for the purpose of –


i watering a garden

ii cleaning a private motor-vehicle using a domestic hosepipe

iii cleaning a private leisure boat

iv filling or maintaining a domestic swimming or paddling pool (except when using hand held containers filled directly from a tap)

v filling or maintaining a domestic pond (excluding fish ponds)

vi filling or maintaining an ornamental fountain (with the exception of such use for commercial purposes)

vii filling or replenishing an artificial pond, lake or similar application.

This prohibition will apply from 8am on Friday, 6 July 2018 until midnight 31 July 2018.

The Irish Water Conservation Order (hosepipe ban) does not apply to private wells or private group water schemes. Working with the National Federation of Group Water Schemes we urge all water users to conserve water during this drought period and over the coming months to protect all water supplies.

Speaking about the legal move, Irish Water’s Corporate Affairs Manager Kate Gannon said:

“Imposing a national Water Conservation Order (hosepipe ban) reflects the serious need for water conservation now and over the coming months. It is essential that our water supply resources are conserved to help avoid further restrictions and outages over the coming weeks and months.

“We are really grateful for the measures that people have taken to conserve water so far and we hope that placing a Water Conservation Order (hosepipe ban) will make people more mindful of their responsibilities and the impact their water usage is having on their neighbours and communities.

“Irish Water is mindful of the impact that a Water Conservation Order might have on businesses and the tourist industry and for that reason the prohibition is mainly limited to domestic users but does include commercial premises for non-commercial activities e.g. watering gardens attached to a business premises.

“The utility continues to be in touch with large commercial users who have committed to conserving water and we are very grateful to them for their efforts. We are also appealing to them to limit all non-essential water use and to avoid using hosepipes or power washers where possible, particularly if it is for cosmetic reasons.”


Notice of legal declaration

Owing to the likelihood of a serious deficiency of water available for distribution, Irish Water intends to make an Order under section 56(16) of the Water Services Act 2007 (as amended) prohibiting certain types of water usage which will take effect on a national basis. The proposed Order will apply to all parts of the country that were not already covered by the first Order made on 2 July 2018 which applied only to the Greater Dublin Water Supply Area.

Once the proposed order becomes effective the whole country will be subject to the same prohibitions in relation to water usage.

East and Midlands



In Athlone, restrictions will not be imposed tonight (Wednesday 4 July) but are planned for the night of Thursday, 5 July to maintain supply as there is a difficulty maintaining treated water levels in the Annagh Reservoir due to very high demand from customers. Conservation measures by the public, night time restriction imposed over the last week and leak repair activity has helped to reduce the number of restrictions, but the water treatment plant continues to work to its limit. These restrictions, when they occur, impact approximately 8,000 people on the eastern side of the town.


Dunkerrin public water supply- Leakage repair crews repaired a leak on the Lisduff water main on Friday which has reduced demand slightly. However to help increase levels in the reservoir  restrictions remain in place for 150 customers in Lisduff Co. Tipperary who are supplied by Dunkerrin public water supply.  These restrictions will continue every second night until further notice.



In Clogherhead and Termonfeckin planned water restrictions will be imposed tonight from 11pm to 7am and considered for reminder of the week based on daily demand trends. Night-time water restriction in place tonight should leave enough in storage so that further water restrictions may not be necessary until Monday night.



In the Granard in the  Granardkill area which is served by Moatfield reservoir from Lough Kinale Water Treatment Plant intermittent supply is continuing to impact approximately 200 people.  Overnight we are seeing some recovery to reservoir levels and customers are receiving intermittent supply.


A water standpipe facility providing water for farmers and other business users in the Granardkill area is located beside the bottle bank facility at the rear of Granard Garda Station. It will be manned twice daily in the   mornings from 11am to 12pm and evenings 8 pm to 9 pm. For domestic water users in the Granardkill area three static water tankers are available all day, these are located adjacent to Granarddkill Old Cemetery.

In order to preserve reservoir levels (Cairn Hill) which is supplied by Smear Water Treatment Plant night time restrictions (11pm-6am) will continue over the weekend impacting around 500 people.



Water levels in the aquifer supplying the Portlaoise Water Supply Schemeare reducing but current demand from customers is being met. No restrictions are planned tonight.

In the Laois South East Regional Supply – The source of this supply is Kyle Spring. Ballyadams, Crannagh, Ballylinan and Pedigree are experiencing lower pressures since Sunday due to necessary supply restrictions to the local service reservoir but not the customers. The treatment capacity of the plant is approximately 2500m3 per day. For the past 10 days demand has been outstripping supply by 180m3 per day. This has resulted in the main reservoir at Gallow Hill being almost depleted. We are managing storage within the network in order to minimise impact to customers. Irish Water are asking customers to conserve water as much as possible.

The Swan Water Treatment Plant is on nightly restrictions impacting approximately 1,500 people. Irish Water continue to impose nightly planned water outages from 10 pm to 6 am to allow treated water levels in Wolfhill Reservoir to recover. This water restriction will impact customers in The Swan, Wolfhill, Mayo and Doonane Co. Laois. Four static water tankers are in place throughout the network for public use.  An additional tanker was made available from Monday morning for supply for farm animals only. It is hoped that this will reduce agricultural demand on the water supply scheme.


In Portarlington – a number of areas are experiencing intermittent supply and/or low water pressure due to low borehole levels


East Galway

The Ballinasloe Water Treatment Plant is operating at full capacity and reservoir levels are giving major cause for concern. Supplementary pumps have been deployed due to low water levels in the River Suck, which are decreasing at a significant rate. Customers in Ballinasloe, Laurencetown, Eyrecourt and Kiltormer are urged to reduce water usagein every way possible to ensure a continuous supply for all.

Aran Islands

Night time restrictions on Inis Mór and Inis Oirr will be extended from 8pm to 8am daily commencing on Friday, July 6. Water usage on Inis Mór has increased by 30 per cent in the past 21 days and reservoir levels are giving cause for very serious concern.

Water consumption on Inis Oirr and Inis Meain has increased by 30 per cent in the past two weeks and Irish Water is urging customers to increase their efforts to conserve water on all of the Aran Islands.

West Galway

Restrictions remain in place on the Ballyconneely Water Treatment Plant serving the Ballyconneely and Foreglass areas from 11pm to 7am for the foreseeable future. This is because demand on this scheme is now exceeding supply.

Demand in Tír na Fhía/Leitir Mór has increased significantly and some areas are experiencing outages. Supply from the Tír na Fhía Water Treatment Plant is higher than can be sustained and leak repairs have been carried out in recent days.

South Galway

Customers in Clarinbridge, Kilcolgan, Roveagh, Ballinderreen and Tyrone Group Water Scheme are urged to conserve water. Work has been carried out at Clarenbridge Water Tower to improve the supply situation in the short term but consumption is still very high.

Customers in Gort are also urged to conserve water as raw water levels in the Gort River are dropping.

North Galway

Groundwater springs and boreholes supplying Dunmore/Glenamaddy, Kilkerrin/Moylough, Ballygar, Mountbellew and Ballymoe are extremely low and are a cause for serious concern.

Galway City

Due to very high demand in areas supplied by Tonabrocky reservoir, Irish Water has no choice but to restrict water supply at night time between the hours of 11pm and 7am.

Barna, Moycullen, Knocknacarra, Kingston, Taylor’s Hill, Letteragh Road, Bishop O’Donnell Road, Clybaun Road, Cappagh Road, Ballymoneen Road (areas north of Western Distributor Road) may experience low pressure and reduced flow at night time.

These restrictions are essential to allow the Tonabrocky reservoir storage levels to recover and will remain in place at night time until further notice.

Water conservation appeal

Irish Water is appealing to the Galway public, particularly people working and living in Dunmore/Glenamaddy, Kilkerrin/Moylough, Ballygar, Ballymoe, Williamstown, Tuam, Athenry, Oranmore, Tir an Fhia, Leitir Mór, Tully, Letterfrack, Leitir Mór, Carraroe, Ballinasloe and Galway City to conserve water while the prolonged dry spell that has been predicted by Met Éireann, continues.


Night time restrictions have been imposed on the Pettigo water supply from 11pm until 7am. This will continue for the foreseeable future and both Irish Water and Donegal County Council will continue to monitor the scheme carefully.

The Lough Mourne and Inisowen water supplies are still classified as at-risk and customers supplied from these schemes are asked to be especially mindful of their water consumption at this critical time.

Southern Region

In Limerick night time restrictions from 12 midnight until 6am continue in Pallasgreen, Herbertstow, Knocklong, Hospital and Oola.

Kilkenny restrictions from 10pm to 6am are in place in Bennettsbridge, Dunamaggin, Kells, Danesfort, Ballyhale, Knocktopher and surrounding areas.

In Cork the following areas have night time restrictions from 11pm to 7am – Inniscarra, Clonakilty and Kilbrin.

Restrictions in Tipperary continue nightly in Coolbawn from 12 midnight until 6am.

In Waterford there are night time restrictions in the Old Parish Loskeran scheme from midnight until 6am daily.

In Kerry the Caherdaniel supply is on a night time restriction from 12 midnight until 6am.


In Carlow the following areas are on night time restrictions from 10pm until 6am  Ballon, Fenagh, Myshall, Kildavin, Newtown, Garryhill, Clonegal & surrounding areas.

In Co Clare there are restrictions in the following areas from 10pm until 6am daily – Lahinch, Lisdoonvarna, Doolin, Liscannor,  Ballagh-Cahersherkin (Ennistymon), Kilfenora, and surrounding Group Water Supply schemes.

Tips to help you conserve water

• Leak free: Check that your home is leak free. Check for running overflows and fix any dripping taps, cisterns or pipes

• Don’t let the tap run: Brushing your teeth with the tap running can use up to a staggering 6 litres per minute. Brushing your teeth with the tap off will use a more modest 1 litre of water

• Shower vs. Bath:The average bath uses 80 litres of water compared to an average shower using 49 litres in seven minutes. Switch your bath to a shower for a massive water saving

• Less time: With the average shower using 7 litres of water per minute by turning your five minute shower into four minutes, you could save up to 7 litres of water per day!

• Fully loaded: Always ensure your dishwasher and washing machines are fully loaded. A modern washing machine uses approximately 65 litres of water per cycle while a dishwasher uses 20 litres. By ensuring they are fully loaded, not only will you conserve water but you will also reduce your energy bills

• Don’t flush it all away:A third of all water used in the home is flushed down the toilet. Some larger cisterns can continue to work effectively with a smaller flush. Place a displacement device into the cistern (out of the way of moving parts) to save water

Irish Water is also developing the National Water Resources Plan on how we can provide a safe secure and reliable water supply to our customers for the next 25 years. This will set out how we will maintain the supply and demand of drinking water over the short medium and long term. This national plan will ensure the best use of water resources for the benefit of all our customers. For more information please see water.ie/nwrp

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Tips to help you conserve water

• Leak free: Check that your home is leak free. Check for running overflows and fix any dripping taps, cisterns or pipes

• Don’t let the tap run: Brushing your teeth with the tap running can use up to a staggering 6 litres per minute. Brushing your teeth with the tap off will use a more modest 1 litre of water

• Shower vs. Bath: The average bath uses 80 litres of water compared to an average shower using 49 litres in seven minutes. Switch your bath to a shower for a massive water saving

• Less time: With the average shower using 7 litres of water per minute by turning your five minute shower into four minutes, you could save up to 7 litres of water per day!

• Fully loaded: Always ensure your dishwasher and washing machines are fully loaded. A modern washing machine uses approximately 65 litres of water per cycle while a dishwasher uses 20 litres. By ensuring they are fully loaded, not only will you conserve water but you will also reduce your energy bills

• Don’t flush it all away: A third of all water used in the home is flushed down the toilet. Some larger cisterns can continue to work effectively with a smaller flush. Place a displacement device [e.g. a brick] into the cistern (out of the way of moving parts) to save water

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@WexfordCoCo @IrishAmerica @IrishCentral US Naval WWI memorial Wexford unveiled to flyover facing Comm John Barry

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My speech in favour of allowing Conscientious Objection on Abortion (motion 95) at #SFAF18

Update: for clarity, this is the entire original text, with parts edited into 90 second speech in bold.

Speaking in favour of Motion 95, with reference to 93, but independent of it.

Motion 93 seems to effectively place the default value of the unborn – however we regard that – at zero.

It is not actually necessary to regard the unborn as fully human, or a full person, or fully sentient to find that problematic, it is only necessary to regard that value as greater than zero.

Motion 93 implies, that because it is frankly unlikely that we can legislate for certain circumstances, it is therefore impossible for the state – or the community it represents – to have any say in the process.

It reduces the entire question of when human rights begin, of when sentience and consciousness become worth protecting, to a medical issue; but one entirely absent from such concerns.

This is a deeply ideological decision, a value judgement, collectively made.

If by default it is to imply and assign a zero value, that value judgement will cascade through all the institutions of the state.

I appreciate that there is a valid concern too, that if we allow conscientious objection on this, where does it stop?

But this fear is misplaced.

The subject is one of relatively few, where we have a unique overlap of some of the great questions of humanity for the past millennia:

What is it to be human? A person? What are the limits of personal autonomy, or of state power? What is consciousness, or sentience, and how far are we obliged to respect or protect them?

History demonstrates: it is a duty of thinking people to question, and challenge, any consensus or majority view on these questions:

Who gets defined in, and more importantly, who or what gets defined out of the protective fold of humanity.

It is a contradiction to both advocate for cultural and intellectual diversity, and yet prevent functional dissent on such uniquely contested topics.

No matter what your sincerely held views on 93, I ask you to vote in favour of 95.

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Battle of Ross 1798 re-enactment: Sat 16/June 2pm

The Battle of Ross from the 1798 Rebellion will be re-enacted by a group of 1798 re-enactors on Mary St/Quay St in New Ross on Saturday 16th June at 1400hrs.

The Battle will take approx 45 minutes in the town centre.

Onlookers will be treated to a recital by the Carrigbyrne Pike Choir at the Tholsel at approx 1500hrs, immediately following the Battle.

The re-enactors will stay in New Ross until 1800hrs where they will mingle throughout the town and be available for photos before moving onto Vinegar Hill in Enniscorthy..

It promises to be an exciting day.

(From the office of the New Ross District manager)

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The Unborn Identity: why accepting limited choice is compatible with voting “No” in this referendum

A dear friend in a US college was raped. I believe I offered to drive her to an abortion clinic if needed. Privately, I was probably even ready to pay for it. And yet, I will be voting “no” in this referendum.

Perhaps more surprising: I have not had a radical change of heart, either.

A useful test for the moral legitimacy of a law is this: would you personally be willing to enforce a law you approve of?

I could not personally prevent a woman seeking an abortion in certain circumstances – such as that as rape. The reasons were most famously articulated by Judith Jarvis Thomson, in her thought experiment on “the famous violinist“: one ought to have the power to disconnect even a conscious adult of world renown, if someone had surreptitiously connected you, as their human life support machine. As goes for a fully formed adult, goes for a pre-mature human.

In this, Thomson’s argument is sound. One might make an ethical appeal to hang on until the patient has recovered in several months, but surely we could not use legal sanction to coerce it.

Thomson is on shakier ground extending the argument further into the field of personal autonomy. Were we to follow this argument through to its libertarian conclusion, it could seem to forbid even redistributive taxation.

There are a great number of areas where the state – as an imperfect avatar of community – interferes with our personal autonomy and limits our individual action, on a daily basis.

Of course there is much room for critique of what is necessary – or even that such critique should bear a “presumption of liberty” on behalf of the citizen and against the state. This is particularly acute in the case of pregnancy, which represents a unique re-ordering on personal autonomy for half the population.

However: if as part of a shared ethical framework, we as a community mandate state oversight and intervention to prevent cruelty and death to non-human creatures, it is not actually necessary to prove full humanity for the unborn entities – let alone personhood – to require their protection.

Furthermore, whereas for some creatures we argue protection on the basis of perceived sentience (most basically: the capacity to suffer); for many others lacking even this quality, we argue on the basis of an inherent value – such as biodiversity. This extends even to the categories of non-living entities – in matters of heritage, for example.

Many sincere campaigners for Repeal state that they wish to respect the feelings of those on the other side. Thank you, but my feelings are irrelevant. What is relevant, are the following questions – which remain unanswered by Repealers:

  • Do the unborn qualify as sentient – in at least as verifiable manner as other creatures whose welfare is safeguarded by law?
  • As organisms rapidly evolving to a recognisably fully-human state, don’t these entities have any inherent value worthy of protection, even absent full sentience or personhood?

In other words: ought the unborn really be of less matter to the state, than the humane disposal of grey squirrels; penalty-point sanctions on commercial fishermen; and the preservation of sash-windows on old houses?

This vote is unavoidably and equally about what replaces the 8th. That means that it is possible to want to some latitude for exceptional circumstances, and still vote “no”.

The Dáil – who will legislate in the absence of the amendment’s power – has not collectively demonstrated that they take protection of the unborn seriously: as a guiding legal and ethical concept in itself, not simply as a political genuflection to get around a temporary obstacle.

I’m voting “No” because the unborn – whatever they are, ultimately – will have no voice or power over laws that determine their very existence otherwise. A legal and ethical framework that places a default value of zero on them, is not something one should be required to support – morally, intellectually, or politically – even in the face of an imperfect alternative.

Oisín O’Connell is an MA student in philosophy, and a county councillor. He writes this in a personal capacity.

Creative Commons License
The Unborn Identity by Oisín Ó Conail is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://oisin.org/2018/05/17/the-unborn-identity/.

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Beware phone and “phishing” scams

New Ross County Councillor Oisín O’Connell is calling on all County Wexford residents to be wary of phone calls from scammers pretending to be from their bank or financial institution.

“‘Phishing’ is a type of scam – sometimes by phone – whereby someone will contact you, and fish for information by pretending to be from a bank, telecom or other institution. They will try to fake you out, and use your sense of trust to give them valuable information they wouldn’t otherwise have. This is then used by them to make purchases or money transfers online or electronically in your name – to steal from you.”

“In a particularly insidious twist they may even pretend they are from something like the fraud detection department of an institution – and threaten to cancel your cards if you don’t comply. That recently happened to one of my own parents, who ended the call and contacted the local bank.”

“It’s important to know, that while financial institutions and such, may ask you for information to confirm your identity when you call them; they will not call you up to ask you for your name, phone, address, and card numbers and so on.”

“The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) have a website where people can learn more at: https://www.ccpc.ie/consumers/money/scams/phishing/

They have the following helplines:

Helpline Lo-call: 1890 432 432

Helpline National: 01 402 5555

“The CCPC specifically advise that If you receive a call from anyone requesting any personal or financial information, you should end the call and report to a Garda station or call the confidential line on 1800-666-111

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Final #TerraNostra (“our Earth”) exhibition talk @wexfordcoco 6pm 26/April – Prof Declan Long

The final of our series of talks in conjunction with the Terra Nostra Exhibition takes place as follows:

Date: Thursday, 26th April

Time: 6.00pm

Venue: Wexford County Council Offices, Carricklawn, Wexford

Guest Speaker: Professor Declan Long

You are Neither Here Nor There: Art and Twenty-first Century Irish Landscapes.

In this talk Declan Long will discuss a range of ways in which contemporary Irish artists are exploring transformations in the Irish landscape. Over the last two decades artists from the North of Ireland have often responded to the shifting experience and appearance of physical landscapes in the aftermath of the Troubles; in the Republic, artists have diversely addressed how Irish landscapes, of various kinds, have altered during dramatic periods of boom and bust. In the background to these developments, North and South, are the effects of wider global changes in how we experience space and time — and this talk will attempt to consider some ways that Irish artists’ relationship with location has been subject to such influences.

Dr Declan Long is Programme Director of the MA Art in the Contemporary World at the National College of Art & Design, Dublin. He is a regular contributor to Frieze magazine, Artforum International and RTE’s Arena programme. He has recently published the book Ghost-Haunted Land: Contemporary Art & Post-Troubles Northern Ireland (Manchester University Press, 2017) and in 2013 was a member of the judging panel for the Turner Prize.

There will also be a tour of the exhibition at 4.00pm on Thursday 26th April. To book a place on this tour, facilitated by David Begley, please let me know by email.

Kind Regards,


Lisa Fortune,

Assistant Staff Officer,

Arts Department,

Wexford County Council,



053 9196369


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#TerraNostra Exhibition talk 3 @WexLibraries Wexford Town today 7pm – Tom Mooney, poets & landscape

Date: Thursday April 5th, 2018.

Time: 19:00

Venue: Wexford Town Library

Guest Speaker: Tom Mooney

The relationship between Irish writers, specifically poets, and the landscape, has been the source of a pervasive tradition, where mystery, belonging and alienation are omnipresent. As part of the ongoing Terra Nostra exhibition and series of lectures, writer and book reviewer for The Sunday Times, Tom Mooney, will examine the work of contemporary Irish poets to explore the layers of story and meaning, and show how the landscape is freshly minted by their verse.

Advance booking not necessary. All are welcome to attend.

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Winter is coming… plan for a harsh one in 2018/19

So. That was something. Don’t remember two big snows in succession like that before – in Ireland anyway. Nor snow at St. Patrick’s Day parade – outside of New York.

Did notice (since I am an Astronomy geek – not a meteorological expert, note) that those two Artic Winters we had in 2010 and 2011, closely followed a sunspot minimum.

And that after a period of several years with no sunspot-free days, last year it was 28% with 104 days sunspot free. And we are batting for 54% free days (42) in 2018 so far:

[Sun-]Spotless Days


2018 total: 42 days (54%)
2017 total: 104 days (28%)
2016 total: 32 days (9%)
2015 total: 0 days (0%)
2014 total: 1 day (<1%)
2013 total: 0 days (0%)
2012 total: 0 days (0%)
2011 total: 2 days (<1%)
2010 total: 51 days (14%)
2009 total: 260 days (71%)

Sunspots are like a sign of agitation in the sun. Roughly speaking: the more agitation (the more sunspots and less sunspot-free days), on the sun, the greater radiance of energy. Usually small percentages – but perhaps enough to affect some of Earth’s climate or weather systems – in ocean and atmosphere mechanisms. There are several theories as to how this might happen, and certainly none are

conclusive yet.

However: below are some science extracts, that may indicate we are headed for another – perhaps harsher – winter at the end of this year or beginning of 2019. Perhaps increasingly so, over the next couple of decades.

Are you winterready.ie ?

Clear link between solar activity and winter weather revealed

October 10, 2011
by Tamera Jones, PlanetEarth Online


Scientists have demonstrated a clear link between the 11-year sun cycle and winter weather over the northern hemisphere for the first time.

They found that low solar activity can contribute to cold winters in the UK, northern Europe and parts of America. But high activity from the sun has the opposite effect.

The study helps explain why the UK has been gripped by such cold winters over the last few years: the sun is just emerging from a so-called solar minimum, when solar activity is at its lowest.

The long sunspot cycle 23 predicts a significant temperature decrease in cycle 24

Jan-Erik Solheim a,n, Kjell Stordahl b, Ole Humlum c,d

Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics


This analysis shows significant dependency between the pre- vious sunspot cycle length and the temperature…

 short cycles like the one that ended in 1996, have only been observed three times in 300 years. After the shortest cycles, sudden changes too much longer cycles have always taken place, and thereafter there is a slow shortening of the next cycles, which take many cycles to reach a new minimum. This recurrent pattern tells us that we can expect several long cycles in the next decades…

 de Jager and Duhau (2011) concludes that the solar activity is presently going through a brief transition period (2000–2014), which will be followed by a Grand Minimum of the Maunder type, most probably starting in the twenties of the present century. Another prediction, based on reduced solar irradiance due to reduced solar radius, is a series of lower solar activity cycles leading to a Maunder like minimum starting around 2040 (Abdussamatov, 2007)…L

Our forecast indicates an annual average temperature drop of 0.9 1C in the Northern Hemisphere during solar cycle 24. For the measuring stations south of 75N, the temperature decline is of the order 1.0–1.81C and may already have already started. For Svalbard a temperature decline of 3.5 1C is forecasted in solar cycle 24 for the yearly average temperature. An even higher temperature drop is forecasted in the winter months (Solheim et al., 2011).

For some balance, this study finds a weaker correlation – as I understand it, between Solar Cycle and weather system direction, rather than temperature as such:


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