Local Weather

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Drainage & Road Resurfacing On Kickham Street, Thurles, Postponed Until January.

As the remnants of storm Agnes rages here over Thurles Town presently, as was stated on August 8th, 2023 last “By failing to plan, you plan to fail”. Same is a message we have been preaching since February 20th 2022, with regards the cleaning of Thurles road drains.

It is therefore not surprising that we watched Tipperary Co. Council ground staff, out in the middle of the storm, running sewage rods up a blocked road drainpipe, in Kickham Street, undertaking work which should have been completed during the previous summer month.

Work today (September 27th, 2023) being undertaken by Tipperary Co. Council ground staff, unblocking drains which should have been completed during the previous summer month.

It has become quite obvious to our readers that Thurles has no person taking responsibility for the overall administration of our town, over recent years, with weeds currently allowed to grow up through our footpaths, through blocked drain, with no flowerbeds and tubs planted and no potholes filled.

Nine inch high grass growing from a blocked drain on Kickham Street, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Yet again, we learn this morning that the promised upgrading of the necessary new drainage system and road surface on Kickham Street, east of Thurles, which was due for upgrading this month (September), has once again been postponed.

It is unlikely that Mr Joe MacGrath (Chief Executive at Tipperary County Council) who visited Thurles yesterday afternoon; drove his high powered Mercedes up to Thurles Barry’s Bridge, to view what he promised would be repaired by end of May last; a project which once again was an unattainable or fanciful hope aimed at fobbing off residents, in what is now the most neglected and mismanaged Town in Co. Tipperary.
Indeed, had Mr MacGrath driven up Kickham Street, he could have viewed at firsthand the loose tarmac gravel, being ricocheted from the wheels of heavy vehicles onto the ankles of otherwise absorbed, oblivious pedestrians.

Loose tarmac gravel ricocheted from the wheels of heavy vehicle on Kickham Street, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

In answer to a query by Thurles.Info, sent to local elected Fianna Fáil Councillor Mr Sean Ryan, quote, “When can the residents of Kickham Street (N75) expect the road surface and drainage to be upgraded? You already stated September, but this is now unlikely. What is the delay?”

Mr Ryan quickly replied, quote: “I asked this question at the last (Council) meeting. I’m told the upgrade works for the N75 will take place in January. When I get a start date George, I’ll let you know. As you know these works will be done by the TII, (Transport Infrastructure Ireland).” Signed Sean.

Kickham Street remains the busiest main road carrying all of the heavy traffic leading west into Thurles Town and also exiting the town on to the motorway running east of Thurles. It is travelled constantly by our two inactive resident TD’s, namely Mr Michael Lowry & Mr Jackie Cahill, and was used yesterday by Minister for Education Ms Norma Foley, who arrived into Thurles to launch “Much Ado About Nothing”.


Breaking News: Serious Motorway Collision 1km From Urlingford Exit.

At approximately 7:00 am this morning, following very heavy rainfall, an accident has occurred on the motorway, roughly 1km from the Urlingford, Co. Kilkenny exit on the M8.

A large number of emergency service personnel, including Gardaí, Fire & Ambulance services have promptly arrived at the scene.

Motorists travelling from Thurles in the direction of Dublin are advised to divert via Two-Mile-Borris unto the old R639 road, before rejoining the motorway outside of Urlingford.

Motorists are also advised to drive with extreme caution today given forecasted heavy rainfall and poor visibility and otherwise poor driving conditions.

Traffic flow is only now beginning to move slowly forward.


Move Towards Health-Based WHO Air Quality Will Have Positive Impact On Health.

Ireland’s ambition to move towards the health-based World Health Organization (WHO) air quality guidelines will be challenging, but will have a significantly positive impact on health.

  • Air quality in Ireland is generally good, however, there are concerning localised issues.
  • Ireland met all of its EU legal requirements in 2022, but it did not meet the more stringent health-based World Health Organisation (WHO) Air Quality guidelines.
  • It is estimated that there are approximately 1,300 premature deaths annually in Ireland due to poor air quality from fine particulate matter (PM2.5).
  • The choices we make in how we heat our homes and how we travel directly impact the quality of the air we breathe.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has today published its annual air quality report ‘Air Quality in Ireland 2022’. The report shows that, while air quality in Ireland is generally good and compares favourably with many of our European neighbours, there are concerning localised issues which lead to poor air quality.

Ireland met EU legal air quality limits in 2022, however it did not meet the more stringent health-based World Health Organization (WHO) air quality guidelines for a number of pollutants including: particulate matter (PM), nitrogen dioxide (N02), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and ozone (O3), due mainly to the burning of solid fuel in our towns and villages and traffic in our cities.

Poor air quality has a proven negative impact on people’s health. There are an estimated 1,300 premature deaths in Ireland per year due to particulate matter in our air.

In 2022 air monitoring results from EPA stations across Ireland show that fine particulate matter (PM2.5), mainly from burning solid fuel in our homes, and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) mainly from road traffic, remain the main threats to good air quality. High levels of these pollutants are often associated with cold, still weather from late autumn through to early spring, when generally short-term incidents of poor air quality occur.

Launching the report, Dr Micheál Lehane, Director of the EPA’s Office of Radiation Protection & Environmental Monitoring, said: “The EPA’s air quality monitoring has shown that Ireland met all of its EU legal requirements in 2022. However, we did not meet the World Health Organisation (WHO) air quality guidelines for health. This highlights the immediate challenge to move towards the WHO air quality guidelines in the Clean Air Strategy. While undoubtably challenging, the significantly positive impacts of clean air on health are clear and the report identifies some of the actions that are necessary to achieve the health-based air quality guidelines.”

The report identifies that using less solid fuel and cleaner fuels to heat our homes, and reducing our use of cars to go to school, work and play; are actions that will contribute towards achieving the WHO guidelines.

The report further identifies the critical role for local authorities in enforcement, implementation of existing plans and investment in infrastructure to encourage cleaner and healthier air quality choices:

  • Local authorities must provide more resources to increase air enforcement activities and implement the new solid fuel regulations.
  • Dublin local authorities must fully implement the Dublin Region Air Quality Plan 2021, to improve Nitrogen Dioxide levels in Dublin Region.
  • Investment in clean public transport infrastructure across the country must be maintained and increased.
  • More safe footpaths and cycle lanes must be created to continue to increase active travel as a viable and safe alternative to car use and associated nitrogen dioxide emissions.

Mr Pat Byrne, EPA Programme Manager, said: “The localized issues that we see in the 2022 monitoring results impact negatively on air quality and health. Monitoring stations across Ireland recorded high levels of particulate matter associated with burning solid fuels in our towns and villages and high levels of nitrogen dioxide in our larger cities associated with road traffic. We can have immediate impacts on our local air quality by making changes in how we heat our homes and finding alternative ways to travel. These actions which also have positive climate impacts”.

To find out more about how we can improve air quality, read the EPA’s How we can improve the air we breathe infographic or check out the ‘ABC for Cleaner Air’ campaign@ The ABC for Cleaner Air , from the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications, which highlights some simple steps we can all make and help reduce pollution from solid fuels.

The Air Quality in Ireland 2022 report is available on the EPA website.

The EPA continually monitors air quality across Ireland and provides the air quality index for health and real-time results online HERE.
Results are updated hourly on the website, and people can log on at any time to check whether the current air quality is good, fair or poor.


Urgent Action To Improve Ireland’s Household & Commercial Waste Segregation Performance.

EPA Calls For Urgent Action To Improve Ireland’s Household & Commercial Waste Segregation & Recycling Performance.

  • Over two thirds of wastes in general waste bins could have been placed in the recycling or organic waste bins.
  • Food waste in commercial general waste bins is 30 per cent and in household general bins is 17%.
  • Plastics in the general waste bins are also significant for households (17%) and businesses (15%).
  • The rollout of organic waste bins to all houses, apartments, and commercial sectors needs to accelerate without delay.

he Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has today published the latest National Municipal Waste Characterisation Project. The project results show very little change in Ireland’s household and commercial waste management practices since 2018. Irish businesses and householders are still putting the majority of their waste into the wrong bin. Over two thirds of waste in the general waste bins could have been placed in recycling and organic waste bin.

Municipal Waste Characterisation

Food waste is the most common waste in commercial general waste bins (30%) and household general waste bins (17%). Thousands of households and businesses still do not have an organic waste bin and correct food waste segregation cannot be achieved until this is addressed.

Recyclable materials such as plastics, paper, cardboard and metal account for around 24% of the household general waste bin and 37% of the commercial general waste bin.

Urgent action is needed to improve Ireland’s segregation and recycling performance to achieve municipal recycling rate targets and transition to a circular economy. The waste industry needs to do more by providing organic waste bins to all households and commercial premises and support awareness campaigns to make segregation easier.

Commenting on the results, Mr Micheál Lehane, (Director of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Sustainability), said “The results of the latest municipal waste characterisation are disappointing. Currently businesses and householders are putting recyclables, food waste and packaging waste into our general bins. This is a lost opportunity. Organic waste bins need to be rolled out urgently to businesses and households currently without this service. Implementation of the new commercial waste regulations is needed without delay.”

Access to recycling infrastructure, such as civic amenity sites and bring banks, needs to be made easier for householders to support segregation of special, bulky and hazardous wastes.

The rollout of organic waste bins to houses, apartments, and commercial sectors needs be enforced to ensure waste collectors are providing the same level of service to customers.

Mr Warren Phelan, (Programme Manager of the EPA’s Circular Economy Programme) noted: “Our recycling targets and transition to a circular economy are currently off track. There are significant opportunities to divert recyclable materials from the general waste bin, but householders and the commercial sector need more support from the waste industry to make it easier to segregate their waste correctly. Targeted awareness campaigns on segregation and focused enforcement activities are also needed.”

Further information on what is in our household and commercial bins is available on the EPA Website HERE.


Tipperary Farmers Join Protest Outside Fianna Fáil Think-In.

More than 300 farmers are today staging a protest outside the Fianna Fáil parliamentary party think-in in County Tipperary over proposed changes to a nitrates derogation and plans to hold further protests at this week’s Fine Gael meeting in Limerick and at the National Ploughing Championships.

Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) gather to protest at Horse and Jockey Hotel, outside Thurles, Co. Tipperary.
Picture: G. Willoughby.

Members of the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) have gathered at the Horse and Jockey Hotel, outside Thurles, Co. Tipperary, to call on Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue to oppose an EU Commission decision to introduce a tightening of rules around the spreading of manure from January next.

Laois farmer and IFA Presidential candidate Mr Francie Gorman said the Minister and his Department were forcing farmers to the brink with the new rules, which he claims would force farmers to reduce their herd and acquire land to abide by the proposed increased limits.

“Farmers will not accept anything less that the nitrates decision being reversed and a total review of banding. Both of these moves combined will have a devastating impact on the smaller family farm, especially fresh milk producers,” commented Mr Gorman.

He continued, “As I informed the Minister at yesterday’s International Sheepdog Trials in Blessington, County Wicklow, the IFA has put forward a credible solution that will help Ireland meet its targets under the nitrates directive and avoid the inevitable loss of jobs and income that the new rules will bring about, if introduced in their current form. The situation is being exacerbated by the fact that an early decision on the CAP strategic plan has led to payments not being made on time.”

Mr Gorman said IFA members will step up their protests unless the Government changes its approach. “We will bring our protest with even greater numbers to the Fine Gael think-in on Friday in Limerick, and we will continue our opposition to the proposed rules at the National Ploughing Championships and at Department of Agriculture offices across the country until such time as the Minister starts fighting for our sector and the 170,000 people that it employs,” he concluded.