Ireland has unveiled an ambitious plan to tackle the climate emergency by weaning the state، businesses، farms and households off fossil fuels، as the Guardian said.
The government published a long-awaited report on Monday outlining more than 180 measures to curb the country’s greenhouse gas emissions and set a path for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
It envisages a rise in carbon taxes، a multibillion-euro scheme to retro-fit houses، almost a million electric vehicles and a number of other measures to change behaviour by institutions، companies and individuals.
The taoiseach، Leo Varadkar، said: “We are going to change how electricity is produced and consumed، how our homes and workplaces are heated; the way we travel; the types of vehicles we purchase، and how food is produced. Above all، we are going to decouple emissions growth from economic growth … This plan represents the sum of our hopes for the future.”
Sign up to the Green Light email to get the planet's most important stories Read more Ireland is one of the European Union’s worst carbon emission offenders and is facing fines of more than €250m for missing 2020 targets on reducing emissions and adopting renewable energy.
Trends in agriculture and transport mean that emissions are set to continue rising in the next few years، risking even steeper fines for missing 2030 goals and raising questions over if and how Ireland will make its bold plan a reality.
The Fine Gael-led centre-right government is entering a general election cycle and is wary of alienating poorer and rural voters with higher carbon taxes – the trigger for France’s yellow-vest protests. However، support for Ireland’s Green party surged in local and European elections last month، reflecting growing concern over the climate crisis.
The Climate Action Plan to Tackle Climate Breakdown drew on a report published earlier this year by an all-party committee.
Richard Bruton، the minister for climate action، said it put Ireland on a “trajectory” to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050، a significantly bolder ambition than the previous commitment to reduce emissions by 80% – but it is an aspiration، not a binding target.