Time for a sense of urgency in Ireland’s response to climate emergency
05 September 2023
Labour Leader Ivana Bacik TD has called for more urgency in Ireland’s national response to the climate emergency, following the warning by independent experts to the Government that it must do more to deliver on its Programme for Government climate commitments.
Deputy Bacik said:
"The Government's climate performance is still not good enough. We need to see much more ambitious targets and a much greater sense of urgency if we are to avert the worst impacts of the climate emergency.
“The Government needs to ensure a Just Transition to support communities who will have to do the most to facilitate the change we need. It must also treat the sectoral emissions targets and carbon budgets with the seriousness needed. There is simply no time to delay.
“We see from the report of these experts, who were commissioned by Friends of the Earth, that there has been a decline in progress on transport commitments this year, which is particularly concerning. A lack of spending on active transport infrastructure and a rebound of greenhouse gas emissions in this sector have been identified as underlying this shortcoming. We know that investment in public transport is of the utmost importance.
“Courage and more drastic measures are needed to assist people in making the shift to less harmful means of transport. Labour has proposed introducing a 'climate ticket' for public transport. This initiative would grant people unlimited public transport, across modes, for just €9 per month. We estimate that the carbon emissions savings of such a policy would be equivalent to removing 23,000 cars off our roads. In tandem with greater provision of public transport in areas which are currently underserviced, the potential of this policy is even greater. It’s time this Government was brave enough to take radical steps towards a cleaner future.
“The Labour Party is calling on Government to take urgent action on climate change. A climate ticket would be a major step in the right direction.
"We need to act now, or we will face the consequences for generations to come. We can no longer afford to delay action.”