Learning care for the earth from the Cloughjordan eco-village

November 17, 2023 in Featured News, News

Dr. Ciara Murphy, Environmental Policy Advocate at the JCFJ, organised a visit recently to the eco-village at Cloughjordan, Co. Tipperary. The eco-village is an innovative residential community that focuses on sustainability, environmental consciousness, and community living. It is designed to be a model for environmentally friendly living, incorporating aspects like renewable energy, eco-friendly construction, communal spaces, and organic farming. The community assists in safeguarding Ireland’s natural heritage and biodiversity by planting 17,000 native trees across one-third of the 67-acre site.

The visit included Jesuits and colleagues of the Irish Jesuit Province, including members of the ‘Caring for our Common Home Working Group’, members of JCFJ, Gardiner Street parishioners, and facility managers. Terry Howard SJ, Socius in the Irish province, represented the Provincial.

The day involved a presentation on the background of the eco-village, a guided tour of the village, including the district heating system, the sustainable architecture, and the community farm.   

After lunch, which showcased the produce from the village farm, the group took part in a facilitated discussion with Professor Peadar Kirby about the spiritual aspects of living sustainably as a community as well as the resilience it takes to live as an intentional community.

In 2017, President Michael D. Higgins attended the opening ceremony of the 300-audience capacity Cloughjordan Amphitheatre », which is sculpted from the Tipperary landscape and built by Cloughjordan Arts CLG. It is built using a permaculture design process, it symbolizes dedication to both the Arts and the natural world.

The town has a museum dedicated to Thomas MacDonagh, a Cloughjordan native and signatory of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic. It celebrates his life of poetry and drama and has exhibitions of his personal belongings and wares.

Other attractions of the area include Knockanacree Woods, a 200-year-old deciduous woodland of mostly beech trees that hosts 200 more species than a spruce forest. New loop walks have been developed by the community there.

Members of the Cloughjordan community now host a series of educational webinars and use modern technology to spread ideas and practices on sustainable living.

You can contact them at Ecovillage Education: 086 085 1576 | Email: [email protected]