Video: Coalition leaders fail to agree on climate targets, law passed for safe access zones

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Talks continue as coalition leaders fail to agree on emission targets

Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said “it is not easy” to decide what level of climate emissions targets should be imposed on each sector, after the three coalition leaders failed to reach an agreement on Tuesday night.

Speaking on his way into Cabinet on Wednesday morning, Mr Martin said that the challenge in relation to agriculture is to acknowledge the greater part it will play in the energy sector in the future, and “to reconcile the importance of food production system supply with the climate change issue which is undoubtedly there”.

Mr Martin said emissions ceilings will present “challenges” to transport, energy and agriculture, but that “all sectors will have to stretch themselves” as part of tackling climate change.

“This Government has set new targets, set a new legislative framework to deal with climate change across all sectors and all sectors will have to stretch themselves.

Safe access zones legislation outside abortion clinics to be enacted this year

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Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said he wants to see legislation on setting up safe access zones outside facilities that provide abortion services become enacted this year.

Under the proposed laws, anti-abortion protesters could be fined or jailed for holding demonstrations outside healthcare facilities that provide termination services.

The plans are due to be approved by Cabinet on Wednesday.

The safe access zones will be set up 100 metres around any facility that can provide abortion services, not just those that currently do so.

Protests will be banned within the exclusion zones.

Speaking ahead of Cabinet, Mr Donnelly said the introduction of exclusion zones has been a Government commitment, describing it as an “important” measure.

Lower income households experienced higher inflation rates in June, CSO

Lower income households experienced inflation rates of up to 10.3 per cent compared to 8.2 per cent for highest income households in June, according to the Central Statistics Office (CSO).

A research paper conducted by the CSO on inflation shows that for households in the lowest decile, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels was the largest contributor to their estimated inflation rate. This was followed by Rent and Transport.

Households paying a mortgage had an estimated annual inflation of 8.4 per cent, while for households that own their home outright, inflation was estimated to be 9.3 per cent.

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Households that rent their home from a private owner had an estimated inflation rate of 9.4 per cent, versus 9.9 per cent for those renting from a local authority.

Compared with the June 2022 CPI figure of 9.1 per cent, the annual inflation rate was 8.8 per cent for urban households and 9.7 per cent for rural households.

Pension rights of convicted gardaí 'warrants investigation' after Moody sentence - GRA

Reflection on the sentencing for coercive control crimes “may be needed” according to Sarah Benson, CEO of Women’s Aid, while the president of the Garda Representative Association (GRA), Brendan O’Connor has said that the pension rights of convicted gardaí “warrants investigation”.

Both were commenting on RTÉ radio’s Morning Ireland on the conviction and sentencing to three years and three months of serving garda Paul Moody for a litany of abuse and coercive control against a woman during a four-year relationship.

Ms Benson paid tribute to the victim for her strength in coming forward to report the abuse, unfortunately this was not an isolated case. She said she would urge anyone in a situation of coercive control to seek help. This conviction showed them that they would be believed.

Night-time economy grant extended to support 'off-peak' entertainment

An additional €1.4 million has been added to the Night-Time Economy Support Scheme to encourage 'off-peak' entertainment in licenced and unlicensed venues around the country.

Minister for Culture and the Arts Catherine Martin confirmed the extra funding on Tuesday, brining the scheme's total value to €4 million.

The funding allows pubs, nightclubs, cafes and other "suitable licensed and unlicensed premises" to apply for support to trial a "series of cultural activities", with a four-event minimum.

Events include music, comedy, dance, literature, poetry, theatrical productions, plays, craft and art/photographic exhibitions, while the maximum grant offered per application is €10,000.

 

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