#NatureTrumpsWall campaign gains almost 100,000 signatures to stop Trump’s Irish Wall
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 6 October, 2016 - With almost 100,000 people signing the online petition in two weeks, Save The Waves’ #NatureTrumpsWalls campaign opposing Donald Trump’s seawall proposal in Western Ireland is gaining major traction.
The petition is directly targeting the local planning authorities in Clare County, Ireland who will determine the fate of Doughmore Beach. The nearly 100,000 signatures represent a global constituency of coastal advocates, from Ireland and beyond, who see the seawall as a critical threat to Doughmore Beach’s ecology, public access, and recreational value.
Nick Mucha, STW’s Director of Program, said, “It has been an impressive start to this campaign and we are encouraged by how many people are standing with STW in opposing the project. We are sending a clear message to the Clare County Councilors that the whole world is awaiting their decision and we expect them to do the right thing.”
The proposed wall on Doughmore Beach would run 2.8 kilometers, reach 15 feet tall, and consist of 200,000 tons of rock dumped on a public beach to protect Trump’s private golf course. The wall would traverse an expansive sand dune system known as Carrowmore Dunes; a 31-acre renowned ecological treasure that is considered a ‘Special Area of Conservation’ by the European Union Special Habitats Directive.
The sand dunes play a critically important role at Doughmore as they contribute the sand supply for the wide, popular beach, as well as nourish the offshore sandbars that make it a consistently fun surf spot. The project would also restrict public access to the beach, particularly during the lengthy construction period.
Fergal Smith, Irish big-wave legend and environmentalist, has joined the #NatureTrumpsWalls campaign and stated, “It’s so important that we stand up for nature and not get bullied by business. We must respect nature and have to learn to work with it, not just impose what some humans want. We are at a time in history where we can no longer watch money be more important than environment. “
Save The Waves is working alongside prominent Irish and European environmental and surfing groups to defeat Mr. Trump’s proposal. The coalition of organizations includes Surfrider Foundation Europe, Friends of The Irish Environment, Irish Surfing Association, West Coast Surf Club, Friends of The Earth Ireland, and the Irish Seal Sanctuary.