Saint Patrick’s Day Parade Prize awarded to “NO FRACKING IRELAND!”

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day to all!
If you are planning on visiting the “Land of Saints and Scholars,” to see the “Forty Shades of Green,” make sure you come before the Fracking Starts!
This was the message today from the Saint Patrick’s Day Float which won the “Most Entertaining Float,” in the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in my local town of Drumshanbo!

A representative from “NO FRACKING IRELAND,” Cara, accepts the award on behalf of everyone who worked so hard for several weeks, making the float, from Martin Kenny, Sinn Fein Councillor and Councillor Gerry Dolan. 

Deputy Colreavy of Sinn Fein, speaking on the issue of Fracking in Ireland,  stated that,  “Sinn Féin will stand with the people in their fight against it.”

Michael Colreavy, Sinn Féin TD for Sligo-North Leitrim, has criticised proposed plans for the use of hydraulic fracturing or fracking as a means of gas extraction in the Lough Allen Basin. 
Deputy Colreavy highlighted the fact that there are real concerns about the use of fracking, both for the health of the people in the surrounding areas, and also environmental concerns.

Speaking on the issue Deputy Colreavy said: “The use of fracking has been outlawed in France and in Bulgaria. In England, near Blackpool, fracking has been suspended due to strong evidence that it was a contributing factor to a number of earthquakes. The practice, if introduced into Ireland, could well have environmental and health implications for people in the vicinity of the fracking activity. The practice is not likely to benefit the people of the area because, just like the gas, the money too will flow out of Ireland.” 
Deputy Colreavy added: “People will be excused if they are sceptical of Tamboran Resources promise of jobs to the area. The practice of fracking will cause more harm to the area than benefits. The real potential for job creation in the North West region is in the development of clean, renewable energy. 
Most people in Leitrim, Cavan, Fermanagh and other areas realise that this practice could have a huge impact on their lives and their surrounding area. This has been clearly demonstrated by the massive groundswell of opposition to fracking. Sinn Féin will stand with the people in their fight against it.

Representative of “NO FRACKING IRELAND,” with Hugh Gallagher, Chairperson of Cull and Tymon Cumann, Arigna. This branch of Sinn Fein hosted a screening of  Josh Fox’s “Gasland,” as a community event in Arigna. People in this part of Ireland are becoming more informed about the perils of fracking.

Thanks to the Transition Year students at Carrick School who helped out with the Float!

Saint Patrick’s Day Permaculture at Bealtaine Cottage

Saint Patrick’s Day! The middle of March in the West of Ireland…and there is much to celebrate! For we have enjoyed a mild winter and fast warming Spring.

According to  the old Irish annals, Patrick died in AD 461 on March 17.

And so, it is today that we celebrate the greatest non-Irish person as the greatest  of the Irish… for it is in Patrick that the Irish nurture their sense of national pride.

Much of the landscape of Ireland is awakened into Spring at this point in the year as you can see from the photographs taken this morning here at Bealtaine Cottage.

It has been traditional to plant potatoes on saint Patrick’s Day or thereabouts, so this morning, this is what I shall be doing, having prepared the beds at the beginning of the week, (and sliced through the water-pipe!).

Potatoes in Ireland were traditionally planted into mounds, a form of raised bed.  

Potatoes are planted into the mounds as they have a lower tolerance to frost and this way of planting affords a certain amount of protection. Other more hardy crop,s are Peas, Beans and Cabbage, all of which can be planted out regardless of frost.

Permaculture planting takes into account these variants and straw is placed over the beds of potatoes as both a mulch to exclude weeds and a protection against late frosts, which can be expected right through to May!

All these pics were taken this morning and as you can see, it is a perfect planting day in the west of the country.
The celebrations and parades will all take place this afternoon, so the morning is planned for a little light work, planting!

So, it just suffices to say…A very Happy Saint Patrick’s Day to you all, with blessings and love to each and every one of you, from Bealtaine Cottage, Ireland.