Skellig objections hit An Taisce’s credibility

AS we have said many times we have an enthusiasm for enacting laws that is not supported by our enthusiasm for ensuring those laws are obeyed.

We are great at making rules but not always good at enforcing — or observing — them. This is particularly true in regard to the environment where many outrages go unnoticed and certainly unchallenged. It is an absolute certainty we will regret this indifference but by then what was lost through carelessness will be gone forever.

This has provoked cynicism and very often facilitated illegality. It has also fostered a culture of objection; a culture that tries to wrap our world in swaddling clothes and imagine that our living, breathing, working planet can be frozen in a moment we believe real even it is largley a construct of the Office of Public Works.

The controversy about using Skellig Michael for the Star Wars franchise has errupted again and it has done little or no credit to the organisation leading the charge — An Taisce. One of its objections is that the film crew might accidentally introuduce rats to the island and thereby threaten seabird colonies. If that argument holds water then the hundreds of ferries bringing visitors to the island each year are as great a threat. At a moment when the environment is under such threat we need watchdogs with authority. This latest episode has done nothing to enhance An Taisce’s reputation and has unfortunately undermined its ability to do its core work.

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