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Trocaire has expressed dismay at the Government’s decision to withhold a ‘money message’ to the Climate Emergency Measures Bill. This bill would effectively end fossil fuel exploration.
The cabinet has opted to protect an industry that has contributed disproportionately to global emissions, causing poverty and hunger to spiral.
“The impacts of climate change today are already at crisis levels in the countries we are working in” said Niamh Garvey, Trócaire Head of Policy and Advocacy. “People in south-east Africa are still picking up the pieces from Cyclone Idai earlier this year and food aid needs in the region will remain exceptionally high through to 2020 as a result”.
“While the Government is doing everything it can to protect an industry that must be phased out rapidly if we are to avoid climate breakdown, while poor and vulnerable people on the frontlines of climate change impacts are fighting for their lives.”
A majority in the Dáil have voted twice in support of the Climate Emergency Measures Bill, which has cross-party support from the opposition.
The late issuing of a ‘money message’ for the Bill has been widely condemned as a cynical move to block it from going forward.
“Ending fossil fuel exploration is not radical, it is basic common sense, grounded in evidence, and a fundamental necessity if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change” said Garvey. “New fossil fuel reserves are not a pre-requisite for energy security – because we can’t know if they are there, and even if they were, bringing them on stream would pose fundamental risks to society”.
“Now that this issue is on the table, the Oireachtas cannot step away from it. Supportive Parties must reaffirm their intention to legislate for ending fossil fuel exploration.”