Irish environment minister Dick Roche announced 13 new nature protection initiatives on Friday, as he launched an interim review of Ireland's national biodiversity plan 2002-6. The government is to establish a €1m biodiversity fund for the period 2006-7. The environment ministry will create a dedicated biodiversity unit and establish a new biodiversity forum. It will also issue all local authorities with guidelines on drawing up local biodiversity action plans. A second national plan is to be drafted for the period after 2006. See press release.
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