Ireland is set to become a ‘leading’ country in the fight against climate change, as the government announce their plans for the environment.
The country is currently a long way off its CO2 targets that it has committed to, but Environment Minister Richard Bruton is seeking cabinet approval for big changes.
He has put forward an ‘all of government plan’ which will set targets for each government department and body.
He said: “The central ambition of this plan will be to make Ireland a leader in responding to climate change.
“Ireland is currently far off course to achieve the CO2 targets to which we have committed.
“I want to make Ireland a leader in responding to climate change, not a follower. That will require a significant step change across government.
“Being a leader means acting now, stretching ourselves and seizing the enterprise opportunities in a low carbon economy, including the new circular and bioeconomies.”
The Irish public will also be encouraged to make ‘little changes’ to their daily lives; from how they heat their homes and workplaces to using public transport more often.
Mr Burton continued: “Every person, every community, every business, every home and every school will have to make changes in the way we live and work and learn.
“Nothing less will do if we are to make the changes that are needed to create a sustainable future for everyone.”
A push towards promoting electric cars could also be on the horizon and Mr Burton revealed that he has recently made the switch.
He said: “It’s a plug-in hybrid so hopefully that will be a contribution.”
While the technology for electric cars is not yet suitable for everyone, there are plenty of other ways to do your bit.
Chair of the Oireachtas Committee on Climate Action Hildegarde Naughton said: “I think our citizens are very aware of the need to now start reaching for these targets.
“In relation to myself, unfortunately an electric vehicle wouldn’t allow me to get from Galway to Dublin at ease but I do other things like being conscious of reusing and recycling and just being aware of the environmental impact of our day to day living.”
Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcalling