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A Majority of TDs Declare Support for a Strong Climate Law

6 Oct 2010

Stop Climate Chaos coalition asks where is the promised Bill and where's the promised climate finance

A cross-party majority of TDs have now declared their support for a strong climate change law in Ireland and new finance to help developing countries cope with climate change, according to the Stop Climate Chaos coalition. 84 TDs have now signed the "Climate Commitment" launched by the coalition of environment, development, faith and youth groups earlier this year. Stop Climate Chaos made the announcement the day after a Cabinet Committee meeting called to discuss climate change was cancelled without explanation.

Charles Stanley-Smith, Chair of An Taisce said:
"A year ago the Government parties committed themselves to introducing a Climate Change Bill. Before Copenhagen they announced it would be passed in 2010. We're delighted that such a strong cross-party majority of TDs have now expressed their backing for a strong law that rules out buying carbon offset credits. But where is the Government Bill? What's holding it up?"

The 84 TDs that have individually signed the Climate Commitment include 26 from Fianna Fail, 26 from Fine Gael, all 20 Labour deputies, five of the six Green deputies, and all four Sinn Fein deputies. The TDs committed to supporting a ban on meeting our emissions targets by purchasing overseas offset credits rather than reducing our own emissions, to supporting an independent expert group that would publish its advice to government and to keeping Ireland's financial contribution to addressing climate change separate from and additional to overseas aid.

Sorley McCaughey of Christian Aid said:
"The Irish Government has pledged a €100 million over three years to the international effort to help developing countries cope with climate change. The first year is nearly over and the government has yet to decide where the money will come from and how it will be spent"

Colin Roche of Oxfam Ireland said:
"The Government has promised that money for climate change will be 'new and additional'. Stop Climate Chaos members, supported by the majority of TDs, are clear it must be over and above our aid promises. You don't build flood defences by taking food from the mouths of the world's poorest people".

In December 2010, as the global climate change talks were beginning in Copenhagen, the Taoiseach Brian Cowen committed along with other EU leaders to provide 'fast start finance' to begin to support poor countries deal with climate change. The Taoiseach promised that Ireland would provide €100m over the three years 2010 - 2012. This promise was later encapsulated in the Copenhagen Accord agreed at Copenhagen. Ten months later the government has yet to provide any of this climate finance.

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