LOCAL MEP CALLS FOR A.. ‘LONG-TERM DEFENCE PLAN’ TO THWART FLOODING

8 January 2016 No Comments by The Northern Standard

By Patsy McArdle

A ‘long-tem flood defence plan” must be a priority for the incoming government in facing up to the future of serious ongoing flooding, according to local Sinn Fein MEP for the Midlands and North West, Matt Carthy.

The Carrickmacross-based Euro-MP has said the government’s failure to establish a single agency to lead and coordinate flood risk management, will leave many parts of the state vulnerable to further floods.

Mr Carthy was speaking as Met Éireann issued serious rainfall warnings at the weekend and prior to Tuesday’s emergency meeting convened at government level to deal with the floods’ issue.He said a long term, strategic plan to manage flood risk and defences must be a priority of the next government regardless of which parties form that government.

Mr Carthy said: “Unfortunately the scenes we have witnessed of homes and businesses being destroyed in recent weeks have become something we are beginning to get used to.

“In December my party leader Gerry Adams TD proposed the establishment of a single agency to lead and coordinate flood risk management. He has again written to the Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD urge him to give this proposal serious consideration.

“The reality is that the government’s failure to establish such an agency will leave many party of the state vulnerable to further floods.

“Sinn Féin has committed to bring forward legislative proposals in the event that the cabinet fails to act on this proposal.“It is our belief that a long term, strategy plan to manage flood risk and defences must be a priority for the next government regardless of which parties form that government.”

Mr Carthy also urged the government to immediately apply for funding from the EU Solidarity Fund to help alleviate the costs of restoration and flood prevention works into the future.

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