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8th June 2019 | Biodiversity, Climate Change, Environment, Housing, Local Government

Green Party Councillors Secure Progressive Green Charter for Dublin City

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New Council’s ‘Dublin Agreement’ sees widest-ranging policy agreement for Dublin “in living memory”

Green Party councillors have secured a five-year agreement for Dublin City, setting out actions for the capital’s council on climate change, housing, waste, culture, transport, and accessibility.

The ten-page document, which will be published next week, sets out aims for the city and specific actions which councillors want to take over their five-year terms – with new emphasis on tackling the climate and biodiversity emergencies.

The charter is currently endorsed by a majority of the city’s councillors – 34 out of 63 – but is open for others to sign. Current supporters of the proposal include Green, Labour, Fianna Fáil, and Social Democrat councillors.

Claire Byrne, Green Party councillor for the South East Inner City, said: “Voters rightly expect their local councils to deliver. We’ve now got a progressive agreement to implement and five years to do it. Voters across Dublin saw that Greens are working hard locally – this agreement will allow us to get things done citywide.

“In particular, I’m glad to see strong climate action and targets for the Council to support local arts and culture.”

Patrick Costello, Green Party councillor for Kimmage-Rathmines, said: “This is the widest-ranging councillors’ agreement in living memory. Instead of just carving up positions, it brings councillors together on a deliverable agenda for change in our capital. Core concerns on housing, waste, and climate change are addressed with ambitious targets and specific actions.

“Our ten Green councillors look forward to working with all 63 councillors to improve Dublin. This agreement gives us a strong starting point to make Dublin a greener, more liveable city.”

The full agreement will be published next week. Some key proposals include:

On climate change, there will be a new Strategic Policy Committee to deal directly with climate change, set emissions targets and plant more trees. There will be a push to retrofit council housing, energy efficiency improvements for council buildings, and a new biodiversity and ecology officer for the city.

On housing, there will be a new Dublin City housing plan, increased enforcement on derelict and vacant sites, an increase in housing above commercial units, and a rejection of selling off public land for private development without clear evidence. There will also be a review of how the city allocates emergency homelessness accommodation.

On transport, there will be a full pedestrian strategy for the city, including the full pedestrianisation of busy streets such as Moore Street, Drury Street, and South William Street. The cycle lane network will be expanded, with protective battons added to many existing lanes. The Council will also implement a car-free day, reduce speed limits, and develop a new “street warden” role to improve enforcement.

For the arts and culture, the city will have a set target for city space to be set aside for cultural, creative, and community uses. The city will protect the 1916 Moore Street site, regenerate markets, and support local sports clubs.

On the city’s public realm, the Council will install new benches and public toilets across the city.

On waste, the Council will work to remove single-use plastics from their offices and public events. The city will aim to add more local bottle banks and that new public water fountains will be installed to reduce plastic waste.