Climate Action Plan: None of this is going to be easy, says McGrath

ireland
Climate Action Plan: None Of This Is Going To Be Easy, Says Mcgrath Climate Action Plan: None Of This Is Going To Be Easy, Says Mcgrath
There was complementary funding from the EU to ensure that incomes would be there for farmers “to work with us”, Mr McGrath explained.
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Vivienne Clarke

Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath has defended the Government’s Climate Action Plan warning that “none of this is going to be easy” but was necessary to protect the planet for future generations.

The fundamental question is why it was necessary, he told Newstalk Breakfast.

“We must do this, but it will require a transformative change. We will have to bring people with us, not bludgeon them.”

Major changes across all sectors will be needed, he said, and the Climate Action Plan is a road map towards that.

The changes that are needed will require regulatory and planning changes which are going through the Oireachtas at present. There will be a dedicated system in place, he said, and he expected that by 2025 there will be offshore renewable projects up and running.

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Mr McGrath said that the Government was determined to have the legislation pass through the Oireachtas by Christmas so that the proper regulatory framework could be in place in time for bidding for projects in 2022.

“There has to be certainty for the stakeholders who will be investing to show that we have the capacity to live up to our commitments.

“These are the practical steps that need to be taken.”

Changes in agriculture

The Minister said that it needed to be acknowledged that a lot of change was already underway in the agriculture sector. “We recognise that we need to bring the agri sector with us.

“It’s not about reducing the national herd, it’s about reducing emissions. There are lots of ways to do that.”

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There were a “whole range of solutions” he said, and he believed that the 30 percent emissions reduction target for the agriculture sector was possible without huge job losses as had been predicted.

There was complementary funding from the EU to ensure that incomes would be there for farmers “to work with us”, Mr McGrath explained.

With regard to targets for the housing sector, Mr McGrath said that it was very efficient and environmentally friendly and that new homes being constructed would be very energy efficient. Eamon Ryan will be announcing a deep retrofitting programme for older homes which would “make it worth their while” for people to retrofit their homes.

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