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We stand with the Philipines

Posted on December 07, 2012 by Young Friends of the Earth

As the COP18 climate talks continue the Super Typhoon Bopha which hit the Philippines yesterday shows the devastating impacts of climate change and the necessity for concrete outcomes from the talks. The death toll has climbed to more than 270 people with over 170,000 people fleeing their homes. This is the 16th extreme weather event to hit the Philippines this year and this typhoon is yet another example of how the Global South are bearing the brunt of the impacts of climate change.

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Oisín's opening statement at Teagasc Great Debate on Climate Change and Food Security

Posted on July 13, 2012 by Oisín Coghlan

green_cow - Irish Agriculture claims to be the among the greenest in the world
Irish Agriculture claims to be the among the greenest in the world

The real link between food security and climate change

There is a concerted effort to promote a narrative that increasing Irish food production is a vital contribution to global food security and, therefore, action to reduce climate-changing emissions in Ireland should put no limit on the expansion of Irish agri-industry.

In reality, climate change is one of the biggest threats to food security, not action to contain climate change. Other main causes of food insecurity are conflict, natural disasters, poverty, access to agricultural inputs and good seeds for small farmers.

There is no shortage of food globally. The problem is not production, it's distribution. The 1 billion people who go hungry every day could be fed with just 3% of current world food supply.

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Permanent link | Categories: climatechangefoodandfarming

A letter to Joe Costello when I thought he was going to the Rio Summit, or a couple of things Labour could do if they wanted to show they take sustainability seriously

Posted on June 13, 2012 by Oisín Coghlan

Publication cover - Letter to Joe Costello on Rio+20 June 2012 - Cover image for Letter to Joe Costello on Rio+20 June 2012
Cover image for Letter to Joe Costello on Rio+20 June 2012

The Irish Times reported on Monday that Joe Costello, Minster for Development and Trade, would be joining Minister Phil Hogan at the Rio+20 Earth Summit.

We drafted a letter to him suggesting a couple of things he could usefully do to ensure Rio has a progressice impact in Ireland.

On Wednesday we discovered he wasn't going to Rio, the Irish Times was mistaken.

It's a pity really. Many countries are sending their prime minister, but not Ireland. Others are sending their deputy prime minister, but not Ireland. Last week the Taoiseach and the Tanaiste "launched" a blueprint for "Our Sustainable Future" but couldn't manage a word between them for reporters or the the public.

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Permanent link | Categories: climatechangeenergytransportwastewaterbiodiversityfoodandfarming

Why I'm looking forward to Rio+40

Posted on June 12, 2012 by Young Friends of the Earth

In 1992, when the nations of the world came together at the Rio Earth Summit, the closest thing to pollution I was thinking about was my dirty nappy. Now, as Rio+20 gets underway, I am a graduate about to head out into the world as a community worker. During my journey from cot to climate activism a lot has changed in the world. Yet the principles of the 1992 Rio Declaration stand as a radical and inspirational avowal from 172 nations-representing 98% of the world's population- that they no longer wanted to build a world on unsustainability, injustice and inequity.

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Taylor taste justice, but West Africa continues to be denied it

Posted on May 31, 2012 by Molly Walsh

Taylor tastes justice, but West Africa continues to be denied it
As the EU bows down to big business and continues to exploit the Global South in search of cheap raw materials and energy, what impact will Charles Taylor's conviction really have on a region ravaged by natural resource conflict?

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Land Grabs - Liberia's Titanic Problem

Posted on April 17, 2012 by Young Friends of the Earth

Cartoon - Titanic Fair Share - Titanic Cartoon
Titanic Cartoon

 

by Jamie Gorman

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Is the Environment Minister's cart before his horse?

Posted on December 15, 2011 by Molly Walsh

Horse before cart - Cart before the horse.
Cart before the horse.

Environment Minister Phil Hogan appeared before the Environment committee this afternoon. I find it rather strange to say he "appeared before them". But this phrasing is how people generally describe it when a minister goes in to talk to a committee, especially if he is invited. It brings to my mind images of gable walls and miraculous visions. So there he was anyway, a vision of joviality. He didn't however have any particularly healing words to impart. The Environment committee had hauled him in to clear up some uncertainty caused by his remarks about climate legislation at the end of October. At the time it was reported that the minister had said climate legislation was not a priority for him. As can be expected he was criticised widely for this. For a particularly to the point criticism you should listen to Professor of climatology John Sweeney's interview on drivetime. (It starts about one hour and fifty minutes in)

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Permanent link | Categories: climatechange

Spot the difference. Parliamentary Questions.

Posted on October 24, 2011 by Molly Walsh

merrion - oireachtas image
oireachtas image

Phil Hogan answered a written PQ about climate legislation from Labour TD Aodhán Ó Ríordáin this week. What's concerning about it is how different his answer is from the one he gave in May to an almost identical question. It's striking that his answer can change so radically in the absence of any decision to change government policy and during a policy review that begun in May and which was still being finalised when he gave the second answer.

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May 17th Written Question

Martin Ferris (Kerry North-West Limerick, Sinn Fein)
Question 56: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the date on which he will publish climate change legislation. [11508/11]

Phil Hogan (Minister, Department of Environment, Community and Local Government; Carlow-Kilkenny, Fine Gael)

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A thoughtful Dáil speech on the challenge of framing a forward-looking climate policy

Posted on October 17, 2011 by Oisín Coghlan

Gormley on Carbon Budget Day - John Gormley outlined the contents of the coming Climate Bill in his speech in the Dáil.
John Gormley outlined the contents of the coming Climate Bill in his speech in the Dáil.

I came across this thoughtful and constructive speech on the importance of climate legislation and the progress that was made in building all-party agreement in the last Dáil. It was made in reponse to Minister John Gormley's last Carbon Budget speech on 16th December last year.

How quickly can you identify who made it?

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Statements on the carbon budget allows Parliament to reflect on the progress, or otherwise, being made in various sectors in meeting the target to reduce carbon emissions by 3% annually as set out in the programme for Government three and a half years ago. Some progress has been made but some of it was probably due to the circumstances of the economic downturn.

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Permanent link | Categories: climatechange

News on the climate law.

Posted on September 27, 2011 by Molly Walsh

Minister for Environment-Phil hogan - Phil hogan must produce climate legislation that Ireland can be proud of.
Phil hogan must produce climate legislation that Ireland can be proud of.

Climate policy has ticked along steadily since the Fine Gael / Labour government came to power last spring. Progress has been steady rather than spectular, but the stage is set for key decisions to be taken in the next couple of months.

A good starting point has been the Programme for Government, which has the following commitment to a climate law.
- "We will publish a Climate Change Bill which will provide certainty surrounding government policy and provide a clear pathway for emissions reductions, in line with negotiated EU 2020 targets."

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Permanent link | Categories: climatechangePhil Hogan

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