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Environ 2019: Engagement for Climate Action

29th Colloquium of Irish Environmental Research

This year's conference, the 29th Irish Environmental Researchers Colloquium (Environ 2019), will be held at the Institute of Technology Carlow from April 15th to 17th 2019. This year's event is organised via a collaboration between the Environmental Sciences Association of Ireland (ESAI) and the Institute of Technology Carlow; the organising team are working fervently to put an exciting programme in place and will be delighted to welcome you in Carlow in April.



Institute of Technology Carlow boasts many state-of-the-art facilities, spreading across three campuses in Carlow, Wexford and Wicklow. Environ 2019 will take place on the Carlow Campus, which features world class facilities, among which the Haughton Building, where most of the conference activities will take place.



Institute of Technology Carlow is currently in the region of 9,000 strong in students and staff. It was the winner of “Institute of Technology of the Year 2014” in the Sunday Times Good University Guide and is currently no 1 in Life Long Learners in the Higher Education Sector. The Institute offers many vibrant and innovative taught and research programmes, ranging from Brewing and Distilling, Biosciences, Pharmaceutics and Drug Formulation, Health and Environmental Science, Design, Media and Communication, Avionics, Aerospace, Mechanical, Electronic and Civil Engineering, Law and Social Sciences, Business and Accounting, to Computer Games Development and Cybercrime and IT Security.



This year's Environ is championed by enviroCORE. enviroCORE is the Institute's Centre of Research and Enterprise working to provide solutions to environmental problems. The centre is a group of 34 researchers working in areas such as environmental monitoring and sensor development, bioremediation and phytotechnologies, ecology, biodiversity and natural resources and biomass production and biotransformation.

The world is currently at a critical juncture regarding issues such as global food security, pollution, waste at an unprecedented scale, access to clean water, biodiversity loss, soil degradation, loss of natural resources and, associated to all the above, socioeconomic and geopolitical issues. The recent alarming report by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states the urgency for climate action now to reduce risks of extreme heat, drought and poverty that will affect hundreds of millions of people in the coming decades. This year's colloquium overarching theme of "Engagement for Climate Action" should stimulate lively discussions, as ultimately, and at this point in the planet's history all environmental research we do will help, directly and indirectly, to alleviate and face climate change. This real, unprecedented and concrete challenge for humanity was never as close and now is the time to practice 'Engagement for Climate Action'.

Environ is the longest running and largest forum for environmental researchers in Ireland with an average of 275 delegates attending the event annually. It provides a high-visibility platform for young and experienced researchers to present their findings to an audience drawn from academia, government bodies and agencies, as well as industry.

Workshops

The conference will begin on Monday, April 15th, with a choice of two education and training workshops (one on site and one in the field) on offer to delegates from 10 am to 5pm:

Environ Workshop/Field Trip/Fringe Festival A:Morning - "Eco Trails". A walk on the wild side by the River Barrow. Afternoon - "Day-to-day sustainability festival: what can I do?". Our first fringe festival at Environ! An interactive session in a fringe festival empowering the individual for sustainable living.

Environ Workshop B: "Bioinformatics: Gene Discovery in Microbiomes".

There is a small fee of €10 for each workshop that needs to be paid when booking the event.

Conference Registration

Registration is now open online. The call for oral and poster presentations is now closed but there are a high number of quality research offers that have been made by contributing delegates.



The themes of the sessions for this year's colloquium have been chosen to accommodate the widest possible participation and span a broad spectrum of activities from the physical, life and social sciences. Submissions were invited from the following thematic areas:

  • Water Quality and Resources
  • Waste Management
  • Energy
  • Climate Change
  • Invasive Species
  • Environmental Policy and Communication
  • Human Health
  • Ecotoxicology
  • Environmental Management
  • Air Quality and Urban Development
  • Marine and Coastal
  • Sustainable Transport
  • The Human Built Environment
  • Sustainable Infrastructure
  • Sustainable Land Use and Agriculture
  • Biodiversity and Ecosystems
  • Nanotechnology and the Environment
  • Smart Technology for the Environment
  • Sustainable Crop Science
  • Nature Based Solutions for Resilient Communities

Presenters who have submitted posters were offered the opportunity to summarise their findings in a one-minute oral presentation at the end of an oral session. Prizes for the best overall oral and poster presentations, and for a number of selected topics, will be on offer again this year, thanks to the generosity of our sponsors.

In addition to these, we are delighted with the invited plenary speakers in the colloquium. The conference scientific proceedings open on Tuesday morning 16th April, with the plenary talk of Prof Victoria Thoresen from the Inland University Norway, UNESCO Chair in the Committee for Education and Sustainable Lifestyles and directly involved in the shaping of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Victoria's talk will focus exactly on those and what we all as individuals and communities can do to observe them in our efforts to engage for climate action. Prof Thoresen will be followed on the plenary floor by Dr Frank MacGovern from the EPA, who leads the agency's strategy for climate action. On Wed 17th April the starting plenary session of the colloquium will host Prof Erik Meers from Ghent University, Belgium. Prof Meers is a scientist of international calibre involved in many international projects, among which ReNu2Farm and Phos4You, two major Interreg NEW projects with Irish participation. Erik will address the delegates on current, innovative waste management advancements.

But above and beyond the expert participation in Environ 2019, we are also delighted that this year's colloquium has a stronger element of community involvement. This is shown by the traditional-in-Environs public event we are organising for Monday evening 15th April. This will be an event free for the community to participate and where the floor will be opened by the Green Party Kilkenny Councillor Mr Malcolm Noonan, and followed by a Q&A session with an invited panel with relevant spokespersons and audience participation. This public event will be a discussion focussing on the current urgency to stimulate individual and collective action on climate change. The panellists are Dr John Macnamara from Bord Na Mona, Ms Mindy O'Brien from Voice Ireland, Mr Eddie Punch from the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers' Association, Mr Thomas Ryan from the Irish Farmers' Association, Dr Jannette Davies of IT Carlow and expert on human behaviour and the environment, as well Martina Moyne from designCORE in IT Carlow bringing insights in humanising innovation for environmental protection. The chairperson of this public event will be Ms Sue Nunn from KCLR 96 FM. Last and certainly not least, we have lined up the Eco - Trails Monday morning workshop by Ms Mary White (ex-Green Party) to also be open for the public, and we have organised the first Environ Fringe Festival on how to live sustainably in our everyday life, in Carlow's Delta Sensory Gardens. This workshop/fringe festival is also open to the public on Monday afternoon April 15th.

The registration fees for Environ 2019 are as follows:

  • Full Delegate €190
  • Student/Reduced/Seniors €100
  • Student Group Discount Rate (Groups of 10) €75


The conference gala dinner will be hosted in the Woodford Dolmen Hotel, and tickets cost €35 for the three-course meal. This event will allow delegates the ideal opportunity to network, catch up with colleagues and make new contacts in an informal and relaxed setting. Entertainment will be included.

The Woodford Dolmen Hotel is also the conference hotel and special rates have been negotiated with the hotel, however as it is a busy time of year, we have also listed some additional accommodation options in Carlow. Please organise your accommodation directly and book early to avoid disappointment. You will need to quote Environ 2019 for the discounted room rate at the Woodford Dolmen Hotel, and please note that the Hotel require a card number to confirm all bedroom bookings, without charges being made to the card prior to arrival. There is also a 48h cancellation policy.

We look forward to welcoming you all to Carlow and to the Institute of Technology Carlow.

Dr. Thomaé Kakouli-Duarte
Environ 2019 Convenor, Institute of Technology Carlow

Environ 2019 Sponsor Environ 2019 Sponsor


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