'A new hope?' How to turn today's welcome rhetoric on climate action into reality.
20 Jun 2018
Commenting on today's Project Ireland 2040 event on climate action, addressed by the Taoiseach and four cabinet ministers, Oisin Coghlan, Director of Friends of the Earth, said
"I really hope that today is a turning point on climate policy in Ireland. It's a good step to have the Taoiseach and ministers line up to talk about climate action, public investment and community engagement. Now we need to see the consistent follow-up that turns that rhetoric into reality.
"In our work we see communities are ready for action. But they need support nationwide like that given by the Tipperary Energy Agency to help them turn hope into hard currency.
"The one thing that would unlock action more than anything is a payment for small-scale solar electricity that would allow communities turn schools, parish halls and sports clubs into locally-owned power plants. Minister Naughten's solar grants scheme won't do that. We've just reached agreement at EU level that citizens will have to be allowed sell electricity to the grid, but why wait until the EU makes us do it. Let's do it now and unleash the community demand for local power that's definitely there."