[A report from Ian Lumley, An Taisce Head of Advocacy, from COP-25.]
Even more visible this year than at COP24 in Poland is the presence of the fossil fuel industry in rebranding itself as the agent of climate action. COP25 saw a wide range of events promoting carbon capture and storage (CCS) and/or biomethane. These were held mainly in the national pavilions, therefore having support of the relevant governments. The promise of bringing in CCS is the new front for continuing to burn coal, oil and gas, with a bit of bioenergy to greensugar the pill.
At COP25 on Dec 3 World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), a specialized agency of the United Nations, launched a major report "Transforming Tourism for Climate Action" . The report is alarming in its projection of continuing increase in aviation emissions. Carbon emissions from international tourist arrivals in 2030 are predicted to total 616 megatonnes (Mt) of CO2, a drastic increase from the 397 Mt CO2 in 2016. Emissions from domestic tourist arrivals are projected to increase from 282 Mt CO2 in 2016 to 376 Mt CO2 in 2030.
In the public interest, and in the light of the failure of DCCAE to engage in timely public consultation on Ireland's Long-Term Strategy for Climate Action (required under the EU Regulation on Governance of the Energy Union), An Taisce is releasing this letter which it sent to the Department in February 2019 highlighting, well in advance, the need for such consultation to be properly planned and proactively managed.
The government has until tomorrow (Weds 23rd October) to remove the Shannon liquid natural gas (LNG) project from the list of EU Projects of Common Interest(1). Green-lighting this LNG project would be a profoundly retrograde step and would be totally at odds with both our climate targets and Ireland’s existing national ban on fracking, according to An Taisce.
The Irish government’s attempts to fast-track the controversial Shannon Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) import terminal project represent a giant leap backwards regarding climate action, according to An Taisce. The notion of opening a massive terminal to facilitate the import of fracked gas from the US after Ireland has introduced a domestic ban on gas fracking defies all logic and flies in the face of expert scientific advice regarding emissions reductions.
An Taisce is seeking the immediate intervention of Minister for Communications Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton to respond to the An Bord Pleanála refusal of the Shannonbridge peat and biomass electricity plant. An Taisce calls on the Minister to initiate an Action Plan in energy efficiency programmes for ESB and Bord Na Móna midlands peat power plant workers and suppliers.