A dysfunctional planet cannot host a working economy

The removal of the air travel tax doesn't make any long term sense, according An Taisce - the National Trust for Ireland. The tax will soon have to be re-instated to address climate change as the situation at a global scale becomes ever more alarming.

The recent IPCC climate report (AR5 WG1) confirmed that it is 95% certain that emissions from human activities - such as increased air travel - are responsible for temperature rises and other climate disruption. Air travel is by far the most carbon intensive form of transport per passenger kilometre travelled. Climate change is the issue we most need to address, with the recent IPCC report stating that, under a continuing high emissions growth scenario (RCP8.5), there is now only a 50-50 chance of avoiding extremely dangerous (≳ +4°C) temperature rise within this century. [1]

Airline chiefs can try and dress this issue up whatever way they like, but there are choices to be made between foreign holidays today and a sustainable future for the next generation.

For a sustainable tourism industry, we must ensure better overland links with Britain in the first instance. Sleeper coaches have recently been re-introduced between London and Scotland and it's vital to enhance the overnight sail-rail and sail-coach rail options serving Ireland now.

The impacts of climate change are what must be considered here. Remember, a working economy is an impossibility in a dysfunctional planet.

The notion that addressing climate change is a job for someone else on some other day is dead.


[1] Note: this text originally read "... with the recent IPCC report stating that there is now only a 50-50 chance of avoiding runaway temperature rise." In response to a query (raised in Aug 2015), the text was revised, as shown, to improve clarity and precision. [Revision date: 2015-08-10]

For further information, please call:

James Nix, Policy Director, An Taisce Tel: +353 86 8394129

Charles Stanley-Smith, Communications, An Taisce +353 87 2411995

Email: [email protected]

An Taisce The National Trust for Ireland