Thursday, 16 September 2021
Ceisteanna - Questions - Ceisteanna ar Sonraíodh Uain Dóibh - Priority Questions
Climate Change Policy
I will make one comment on the point the Deputy made about the PSO and carbon tax. The PSO was always a protection, in a sense, against volatile markets. At times like this, when the price of gas is very high and the price of electricity is driven up, the PSO falls away and drops dramatically. The PSO is having the opposite effect. It is being taken out at the moment and that is reducing the price increase effect. It is doing what it was designed to do. It provides a floor at times when gas prices are low. When gas prices are high, the PSO drops. That is helping to cut prices or abate the cost increase. Similarly, the carbon tax we have does not apply to the electricity sector or the emissions trading system, ETS. The international price of carbon does apply but our own carbon tax system does not. That is having no effect on the electricity price increases we are seeing.
We are on a tight timeline because we want to include this year in our plans and we want to get as much done as we can before we go to Glasgow.
The Climate Change Advisory Council is expected to deliver its budget before this, and then we will respond with the revised climate action plan. We expect all that to take place in the first week in October.