Advertisement

Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Wednesday 8 February 2023 Dublin: 6°C

# noteworthy.ie

Last year
2022
# peat sake
Commission warns Ireland over ‘stalled’ action to halt extraction in protected peatlands
The State has two months to act or potentially face legal action before the European Court of Justice.
# send us your ideas
Innovation funding allows Noteworthy to challenge the way complex stories are told
Our investigative platform was the only Irish recipient of the Google News Initiative Innovation Challenge.
# in the weeds
The Explainer x Noteworthy: How much weedkiller are councils using?
Reporter Anthea Lacchia and campaigner James Walsh tell Susan Daly about how almost all councils are still using pesticides.
THE MORNING LEAD
'It was sprayed in the playground': Widespread use of chemical weedkillers by councils
A report by
Anthea Lacchia
The amount spent by local authorities on pesticides varies from less than €1,000 to about €300,000 a year.
At least 28 councils applying chemical herbicide, with 19 confirmed as using glyphosate products in 2022
Local authorities' spend on pesticides varies from less than €1,000 to about €300,000 a year, reports Anthea Lacchia for Noteworthy
Campaigner: "Alternatives have to be prioritised... spraying should not be done in public areas"
The Explainer x Noteworthy: How much weedkiller are councils using?
Inspections found issues in how nine out of 10 vendors handled deadly pesticides
# in the weeds
Inspections found issues in how nine out of 10 vendors handled deadly pesticides
Unapproved or revoked products for sale as well as no trained staff on site were among issues identified.
THE MORNING LEAD
Thousands of litres of pesticides used on Irish roads and forests each year
A report by
Anthea Lacchia
Coillte alone spends around €1.5 million on pesticides – including the controversial glyphosate – every year.
Coillte alone spends around €1.5 million on pesticides every year
In an investigation by Noteworthy, Anthea Lacchia also reports that over 45,000 litres and 800 kg was used along national road networks since 2017
Expert: Outside of agriculture, "there are huge gaps in our knowledge of pesticides and how we use them"
# no room
Wheelchair user facing homelessness condemns lack of Government support
With few accessible options on the private rental market, little support is available for disabled people who fall outside social housing threshold.
# trade off
The Explainer x Noteworthy: Why are Irish unweaned calves being exported?
Noteworthy’s Niall Sargent and vet Dr Alexander Rabitsch tell Susan Daly about animal welfare concerns in the growing trade to Europe.
# trade off
‘Empty bellies’: Unweaned calves left without milk for long periods on journey to Europe
Department audit finds some operators not complying with feeding intervals, Noteworthy reveals.
# trade off
‘A slow, terrible death’: The fate of Irish cattle exported outside of the EU
Noteworthy finds the State has little to no control over what happens to animals once they leave Ireland.
THE MORNING LEAD
'Export loophole’: Irish cattle shipped from Spain on ‘substandard’ vessels
A report by
Niall Sargent
Thousands of cattle exported on vessels that do not meet standards required under Irish laws.
Thousands of cattle exported on vessels that do not meet standards required under Irish laws
Niall Sargent of Noteworthy reports that unwanted males from the dairy industry are among those exported
Destinations include Egypt where ‘appalling’ slaughter techniques are common
# holy land
The Explainer x Noteworthy: Are religious property proceeds going to redress?
Noteworthy’s Maria Delaney tells Susan Daly about how over €90 million worth of properties were sold.
THE MORNING LEAD
Religious orders involved in redress sold properties totalling €90 million since 2016
A report by
Maria Delaney
Investigation by Noteworthy finds these congregations paid €27m to the State in redress during this time.
Investigation by Noteworthy finds these congregations paid €27m to the State in redress during this time
70% - or just under €250m - of redress for institutional child abuse now paid by congregations
Mother and baby institution survivor: "I have no expectations... It’s cold, hard business."
# Investigation
Concerns over data submitted by Wexford power plant to EPA
Independent report alleges a ‘major issue’ with water quality monitoring near SSE’s Great Island Power Station.
# social justice
How Noteworthy is tackling inequity by giving a platform to unheard voices
Social justice has been a focus of investigative platform Noteworthy since its inception over three years ago.
# What's the rush?
Explainer: How 'deeply controversial' planning law changes could lead to 'years of litigation'
A proposed Bill with last-minute amendments impacting judicial reviews is being voted on by TDs tonight.
A proposed Bill with last-minute amendments impacting judicial reviews is being voted on tonight
These could cause 'serious legal issues', with one 'incompatible' with EU law, a solicitor told Noteworthy
Changes criticised by politicians and environmental NGOs but welcomed by construction industry
# no access
No Access: Bord na Móna companies blanket blocking release of information
Key subsidiaries say they fall outside of regulations that enable environmental information requests.
# factory farm
The Explainer x Noteworthy: Is Ireland a dumping ground for poultry manure?
Noteworthy’s Niall Sargent and journalist Ella McSweeney tell Susan Daly about concerns over the cross-border poultry manure trade.
THE MORNING LEAD
Deaths of at least 80 cows in last decade linked to spreading of poultry manure
A report by
Niall Sargent
Cross-border investigation reveals concerns over regulation of the trade in poultry litter, an increasingly important natural fertiliser used on crops and vegetables.
16 farms inspected in last decade over concerns with poor spreading of poultry litter, Noteworthy reveals
In the most impactful case, 19 dairy cows died across two farms from botulism linked to litter spreading
Difficult for authorities to identify farms of origin of the litter for inspection or further action
'Canary in the coal mine': Protected nature areas under pressure from poultry farming
'Potential fraud' in poultry farm planning applications investigated in the North
# factory farm
'Canary in the coal mine': Protected nature areas under pressure from poultry farming
Cross-border investigation reveals serious environmental and air quality concerns from ammonia produced by the rapidly expanding poultry industry on the island of Ireland.
THE MORNING LEAD
'Potential fraud' in poultry farm planning applications investigated in the North
A report by
Niall Sargent
Noteworthy cross-border project reveals serious concerns over the authenticity of documents claimed to be from an Irish State body.
Falsified or altered Teagasc letters used in 23 poultry farm planning cases in the North, Noteworthy reveals
Both national and local authorities in the North are currently investigating the issue
Several cases of dumping of poultry litter discovered in Northern Ireland since 2015
# factory farm
Suspected false documents and illegal dumping: the murky world of poultry manure
Noteworthy reveals serious concerns over authenticity of files used in some poultry farm planning cases in the North and where the manure is going.
# Overcrowding
Over 60% acute hospitals operating at unsafe bed occupancy levels
Five hospitals had an average monthly bed occupancy of 100% or more from January to March 2022.
# Investigation
Peat’s Sake: Leading company under EPA spotlight for potential unlicensed extraction
Noteworthy investigation reveals Klasmann-Deilmann Ireland is one of a dozen large-scale peat extractors currently being investigated by the environmental watchdog.
The Irish branch of peat giant Klasmann-Deilmann is being investigated by the EPA in relation to peat extraction in the Midlands, writes Noteworthy’s Niall Sargent
In June 2021, the EPA warned Klasmann it was of the view that the company was committing a serious and ongoing breach of EU environmental law
Almost a dozen other large-scale peat extractors are also under investigation by the environmental watchdog
Voices
Opinion: 'A real home feels like an unattainable dream' for many disabled people
Julie Helen of Inclusion Ireland is calling for government action on housing and supports in Budget 2023.
# Investigation
Over the Hill: Persistent overgrazing causing 'devastation' in vulnerable habitats
Many upland areas are experiencing ongoing grazing pressure and degradation, with rare plants disappearing.
Many upland areas are experiencing grazing pressure and degradation, with rare plants disappearing
Anthea Lacchia of investigative platform Noteworthy reports that overgrazing remains an issue despite being recognised as a problem for at least two decades
Protected areas will be lost if farmers are not given more support, according to experts
# delayed delivery
'At this stage, it is a crisis': Children still left waiting for public disability services
Parents devastated as one-quarter of staff roles in new disability network teams remain unfilled and children left in limbo.
Staff vacancies in Child Disability Network Teams as high as 88% in one locality, reports Orla Dwyer.
"Everything is a fight," say parents who report poor communication from teams.
Therapist vacancies are highest, leaving children without services.
# State of Emergency
Easy as ABC? Solving Ireland's lethal Acute Bed Capacity crisis
Inpatient bed numbers among lowest in EU and nowhere near demand predicted by capacity reviews.
Inpatient bed numbers among lowest in EU and nowhere near demand predicted by capacity reviews
Maria Delaney of investigative platform Noteworthy examines why despite overcrowding constantly being reported, hundreds of people continue to die
Full capacity protocol activated weekly at University Hospital Limerick, often resulting in cancelled ops
Voices
'It's heartbreaking’: My husband is unable to return home to our family after stroke
Michelle Murray outlines how her husband Charles is living in a nursing home nearly two years after being discharged from hospital due to unsuitable housing.
# Data Protection
Alleged excessive data gathering by Department of Social Protection being examined
Noteworthy investigation reveals the Department had a database of individual free travel journeys until 2020.
The Data Protection Commission is looking at use of free travel pass data, writes Maria Delaney
Noteworthy investigation reveals the Department had a database of free travel journeys until 2020
We also find Leap card system usage records, including journey data, are being retained for over a year
Voices
Opinion: Under-funded and inadequately equipped coroner service needs reform
Liam Herrick says that the process of investigating tragic deaths is not functioning as it should be.
# peat sake
Peat pressure: Industrial peat extraction in enforcement firing line
Historic problems revealed in crackdown on extraction without planning permission and EPA licensing.
Historic problems in enforcement of large-scale peat extraction in Ireland has led to the loss of precious bog, writes Niall Sargent
Noteworthy investigates the case of Harte Peat found to be operating in breach of EU law
12 other peat extractors are now also subject to ongoing EPA enforcement action
# public interest
Noteworthy supporters keen to see health service investigated
Our investigative platform recently received a lot of emails and support for health-related projects.
# award winning
Investigative platform Noteworthy wins prestigious Mary Raftery Prize
Reporter Peter McGuire won for his investigation that found sexual violence victims were fighting roadblocks to justice.
# delayed delivery
None of the 91 community teams for children with disabilities are fully staffed
There is an average vacancy rate of about 25% across teams, the Joint Committee heard this week.
# peat extraction
High Court orders peat company to halt unauthorised extraction in Midlands
Environmental Protection Agency brought injunction proceedings against Harte Peat Ltd.
# delayed delivery
Over half of children with disabilities not receiving any services, new survey reveals
Two recent surveys highlight concerns that services are getting worse rather than better.
# silent treatment
The Explainer x Noteworthy: How is inadequate care impacting people with eating disorders?
Noteworthy’s Maria Delaney tells Susan Daly about the chaotic state of services through people’s experiences.
# peat sake
EPA to investigate complaint about State response to peat extraction on protected bogs
The move from the environmental watchdog comes in response to a complaint from an environmental NGO about illegal cutting.
# silent treatment
People waiting longer to access specialist eating disorder care
The latest data shows an increase in people waiting more than eight weeks for assessments and treatment.