Best wishes for 2012 from Friends of the Earth
22 Dec 2011
We had an early Christmas present last week in the shape of a promise from Minister Phil Hogan to produce a draft climate Bill in 2012.
Under close questioning from members of the Oireachtas environment committee he said it "is my objective" to send the committee a Bill next year. The committee hailed this commitment in a press release and it was reported in the Irish Times. Minister Hogan promised the committee to come back to them with a detailed "roadmap" to legislation early in the New Year.
It was a good day's work by the committee and ends two months of uncertainty since the Minister indicated he was considering deferring preparation of the climate Bill indefinitely.
And it was the culmination of a good year's work by you and all of our supporters and allies. We saw powerful vested interests mobilise against climate legislation at the beginning of the year. Despite the fact that all the political parties promised a climate law during the election, there was a real risk the new Government would let the proposal die quietly.
Together, we didn't let that happen. The furore when the Minister tried to bury it in November means we end the year with a reaffirmation of the Government commitment to legislation and the start of a timetable for its delivery.
We still have our work cut out for us, but there is now a real chance that 2012 will see Ireland get serious about climate change. The vested interests haven't gone away. But neither have we. And neither have you. And together we can win.
Wishing you and yours a peaceful Christmas and a campaigning New Year.
Oisin, Molly, JoAnne and Michelle
Friends of the Earth