Press release

Green councillors play vital role in passing climate action plans

15th February 2024
Green Party councillors on Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Council after they passed the Climate Action Plan.

Green Party councillors across the country played a crucial role in advocating and approving climate action plans in city and county councils across the country this week. They also were vital in proposing amendments to strengthen plans to cut carbon emissions. Taken together, these local plans passed this week are likely to have a significant impact on sustainable development in many areas and lead to the banning of substances such as glyphosate and acrylic paint in some areas.

Each local authority has devised a climate action plan to transition to a environmentally sustainable and climate neutral economy by 2050.

The existing Climate Action Plan dating back to December 2023 sets out a roadmap for Ireland with the targets and measures necessary to meet our commitments to halve our greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050. City and county councils across Ireland are now busy devising plans on how their local area will reduce their emissions and transition to a sustainable society.

Although each plan varies due to local conditions, Green councillors were consistent in fighting for certain issues:

· 51% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030

· Create liveable, walkable 15-minute cities

· Make their local area a climate resilient region and reduce the impacts of future climate change-related events

· Actively engage with local communities on climate action

After Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown adopted its Local Climate Action Plan this week, Green Party councillor Oisín O’Connor said;

"Our council's new Climate Action Plan is a big step in the right direction setting us on a path to reduce our emissions by half by 2030.

“We felt it needed some improvements so my Green Party colleagues and I proposed seven substantial changes to the draft plan which were adopted by the council. We've now stitched a number of initiatives into the plan including developing a composting strategy, reducing waste sent to incineration, helping homeowners with advice on retrofits, zebra crossings and green procurement.”

Cork City Council unanimously approved a climate action plan that contains 128 actions under five headings of governance and leadership, communities and partnerships, built environment, transport and mobility, and natural environment and resource management. The plan is the outcome of two years of concentrated research and public consultation, including household surveys and dedicated climate conversations with young people.

Welcoming the adoption of the plan, Cork Green Party councillor and chair of the city's Climate Action Committee, Oliver Moran, said;

"It reflects more of a 'political dimension' than what officials would ordinarily feel they could place among the actions of a plan like this.

"In particular this amendment directly by the city's councillors themselves recalls the significance of movements like the student climate strikers, who put a spotlight on the issue in the city and internationally. That had a profound effect on how the city took measures to include young people in the consultation on our climate plans."

Councillor Lyn Hagin Meade spoke about the work Green councillors on South County Dublin Council undertook to pass the Climate Action Plan;

“Our contribution to the Climate Action Plan 2024-2029 for South Dublin County Council focused on securing more community resources, information and education. We have worked on green procurement, renewable energy and a strategy to phase out glyphosate and acrylic paint. We would like to thank the council environment team for stellar work and engagement with the Green councillors during the draft process."

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