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No to Shannon LNG

We oppose the building of terminals to import fracked gas, lock us into fossil fuel dependence, and blow our chances of containing climate change.

In 2008 a company called Shannon LNG was granted planning permission to build a terminal on the Shannon estuary in northern Kerry, to import liquefied natural gas (LNG). The terminal hasn't been built, but now the company is looking to get an extension of the planning permission. An Bord Pleanála are considering whether this constitutes a material change to the original permission.

So much has changed since 2008:

  • In 2012, the International Energy Agency concluded "No more than one-third of proven reserves of fossil fuels can be consumed prior to 2050 if the world is to achieve the 2°C goal" for limiting climate change.
  • In 2013 the IPCC published their latest assessment of climate science and estimated that we had used over half the "global carbon budget" if we want to avoid 2°C of global warming, and the entire budget will be exhausted in less than 30 years (5 years ago) if we continue to burn fossil fuels at current rates.
  • In 2015 the Oireachtas passed the Climate Action law to underpin Government policy of reducing Irish carbon dioxide emissions by 80% by 2050. Moreover, the Energy White Paper adopted by Government shortly afterwards set a target for the energy sector of cutting emissions by 80-95% by 2050.
  • Also in 2015, 196 countries agreed the Paris Climate Accord with the aim of "Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels". 
  • In 2017, the Tyndall Centre in Manchester University and Teeside University published a study which found "Current levels of emissions will use up the EU’s 2°C carbon budget in under nine years", "Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) transport increases the climate change impact of natural gas supply chains" and crucially "within two decades fossil fuel use, including gas, must have all but ceased, with complete decarbonisation following soon after."
  • And in 2017, Ireland banned hydraulic fracturing - fracking - for the exploration and extraction of oil and gas onshore in Ireland.

Building LNG terminals that last 30 years makes no economic or environmental sense for Ireland, when we have to leave 2/3 of known fossil fuels in the ground and stop burning gas altogether within two decades. There is a high risk the terminals would become stranded assets, white elephants, monuments to the folly of the late fossil age.

Building LNG terminals to import fracked gas makes no moral sense when we banned fracking - just last year - because the public and our parliament decided the potentially devastating impacts on communities' water, health and tourism and farming were two high a price to pay. Surely we don't now want to import fracked gas from communities from the US and elsewhere struggling to cope with those same impacts.

We urge An Bord Pleanála to refuse an extension to the planning permission as importing LNG is clearly no longer a sustainable option for Ireland.

We urge the Government to reverse it's short-sighted support for building LNG terminals and locking us into fossil fuel dependence, just when opportunities to invest in saving energy and ramping up community-centred renewables are opening up.

*If you sign this petition we will include your name on a list endorsing this explanatory text as a submission to An Bord Pleanala. 

Let's cut plastic waste and oversuse, starting in supermarkets

Are you #SickOfPlastic? Sign this petition urging supermarkets to take steps to reduce their plastic packaging. And #ShopAndDrop on Saturday 21 April. Shop at your local supermarket and drop your unwanted packaging at the checkout when you've paid.

We are all sick of plastic. 

Everyday in Ireland we use more than 500,000 plastic-lined coffee cups that can't be recycled, and 2.5 million plastic bottles that don't get recycled, and supermarkets foist more and more packaging on us. Meanwhile, micro-plastics are making the fish we eat sick, and if we keep going the way we are, plastic waste will outweigh fish in the oceans by 2050.

But there are solutions. Some supermarkets, like Iceland in the UK, are already taking action.Help make it happen here by signing this petition.

What Irish supermarkets can do

We've written to the ceos of big supermarket chains asking them to take these Six Steps:

  1. Offer more items without packaging, such as fruit and vegetables (without plastic trays, wrapping and nets).
  2. Make their own-brand packaging easily compostable or recyclable, and use less plastic.
  3. Demand, through their purchasing power, that other brands they carry have easily compostable or recyclable packaging, and use less plastic.
  4. Blaze a trail in Ireland by implementing a plastic free aisle, as has been done in the Netherlands.
  5. Provide items in bulk, where possible, to reduce packaging.
  6. Allow shoppers use their own containers to buy dried goods, buying only what they need.

What you can do

On 21st April we are asking people to “Shop and Drop” - shop as normal in your local supermarket and then take off the excess plastic packaging at the checkout and leave it with the cashier.

We’re also looking for local organizers and volunteers to help out with the day. Local organizers will promote the day locally and liaise with local supermarkets. Volunteers will hand out postcards and talk to shoppers outside supermarkets on the day.

1. Sign and Share this petition to make sure you get the lastest updates from us.

2. Tell your friends by sharing the Facebook event for the Day of Action.

3. Help us pay the cost of design and print of postcards, posters and other materials for the day.

4. Volunteer to stand outsuide a supermarket on the day by filling out this form.

5. Join the online "Thunderclap" to kickstart the day itself on social media. 

What politicians can do

There is a Bill (draft law) under discussion in the Dáil and Seanad to introduce a 10c deposit on plastic bottles, which would be refunded when you bring the bottle back for recycling. In countries where they have a scheme like this recycling rates are as high as 98%. We had a deposit and refund scheme for glass bottles in the past. It's time to do it for plastic.

We know producers and retailers are lobbying hard *against* a deposit and return scheme because they say it would be inconvenient or too expensive. Independent research shows the scheme would cost about 1c per bottle. We need to show that people really want to see action on plastic and don't want supermarkets and big business dragging their heels.

The Bill would also ban or introduce a levy on single-use plastic items like plastic-lined take-away cups. A 15c "latte levy" as it has been described would encourage more and more people to bring their own cup to the coffee shop, like the Friends of the Earth KeepCup. Many coffee shops have joined the Conscious Cup Campaign and offer customers a discount, double loyalty points, or like coffeeangel do, make a donation to Friends of the Earth every time someone brings a reusable cup.
The Government has promised a separate ban on micro-plastics before the end of the 2018 but they have been slow to bring forward legislation to progress the opposition Bill that is waiting for a Dáil Committee to make time to consider it.

Leo, let there be light!

Please sign this petition to urge the Government not to exclude small-scale rooftop solar from new plans to support renewable electricity. Leo Varadkar signed this petition at Electric Picnic last year. But Minister Naughten's new draft plan for renewable electricity doesn't include support for small-scale rooftop solar - it's all about big business.

Please sign this petition to urge the Government not to exclude small-scale rooftop solar from new plans to support renewable electricity.

As solar panel tecnolology improves and costs fall we want to see Ireland unlock its solar power potential.

As a first step we’re demanding the Government guarantee a fair payment for solar electricity, so people get paid for the excess energy they generate with panels on the roofs of their homes, farm buildings, schools, clubs and community halls. 

Leo Varadkar signed this petition at Electric Picnic last year. But Minister Naughten's new draft plan for renewable electricity doesn't include support for small-scale rooftop solar - it's all about big business.

We will submit this petition - calling for fair treatment for small-scale solar -  to the public consultation on Minster Naughten's plans.

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