Brexit & the Environment

Brexit poses a major environmental threat to the island of Ireland if there is not a common set of standards for tackling issues such as invasive species, emissions standards, water quality, and hazardous waste.

The Environmental Pillar was been working with the Northern Ireland Environment Link over the past two years to highlight the main risks posed by Brexit to the environment of the island of Ireland.

Please see below some of our analysis, research and reporting on this issue.

2019 Independent report – commissioned by the Environmental Pillar and Northern Ireland Environment Link – to examines the cross-border environmental co-operation supported by the Agreement.

Launched at an event at Leinster House in April, the report stresses that firming up the structures and institutions set-up under the Agreement could minimise some of the negative impacts arising from the removal of the existing common EU regulatory standards.

The executive summary of the report is available here:

The full report is available here:

October 2018 briefing note from the two coalitions on the need for a level playing field for environmental standards on the island of Ireland post-Brexit.

The briefing document is available here:

In July 2017, together with NIEl, we wrote to the Taskforce on Article 50 negotiations with the United Kingdom to express our shared concerns regarding the potentially serious impacts of Brexit on crucial cross-border cooperation to protect the environment on the island of Ireland. As you know, this is one of six key areas of cooperation outlined by the North South Ministerial Council as established under the Good Friday Agreement.

Link to letter here:

In June 2017, we made a joint submission with NIEL to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement on Brexit and Shared Environmental Issues between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Link to submission: 

In June 2017, we held a conference in Dundalk today to examine the potential impacts on the Irish environment in a post-Brexit world and explore opportunities for new ways of working together on cross-border issues.

MEPs, legal experts, and environmental groups outlined the potential weakening of legislative protection for nature as the single greatest environmental risk posed by Brexit.

Conference details and highlights here:

Brexit Talk