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Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: On the section, I wish to raise a topic that has come up on a number of occasions in our discussions. The national climate objective talks of "a climate resilient, biodiversity-rich, environmentally-sustainable and climate-neutral economy". When it comes to developing the roadmap of action the roadmap is pretty much confined to the climate dimension of this. There has been some concern in...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: I thank the Minister of State for agreeing to consider the matter. There might have been a slight presumption of it being unnecessary. First, I do not think that climate proofing is quite the same. We have defined the climate objective as "a climate resilient, biodiversity-rich, environmentally-sustainable and climate-neutral economy". To shrink that to emissions only would seem not to be...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: I am sorry to hold this up but can the Minister of State give us his note? I do not have the explanatory memorandum and I want to know what is the purpose of section 7. It is an amendment of the principal Act and it is hard to read the intent.

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: That is fine. I thank the Minister of State.

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: I want to speak to the Minister's amendment. Are we discussing his amendment now?

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: We are setting targets, which is correct and I fully agree with them, but I am trying to understand something. There are targets set out in the Bill. It will have a statutory target of 51% coming from the programme for Government. There are also EU targets under which we have obligations. They are split into two factors. One is an emissions trading system, ETS, and the other is the...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: In response to the point Deputy O'Rourke made, which is understandable, the programme for Government was very clear that we are now setting a much higher ambition than was envisaged in the climate plan that I set in 2019. The latter, as the committee will know, envisaged 1 million electric vehicles on the road, 500,000 homes being retrofitted, 600,000 electric heaters and so on. We are now...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: Yes, please. I fell off the call there. I do not know what happened. I only caught the end of Deputy Naughten's contribution. I understand where the Deputy is coming from, but throughout the hearings we have had on the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021 we have been told to listen to the science. We have also repeatedly heard all parties telling the...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: This is an important debate, on one level, although we are not going to resolve it here. Deputy Naughten is pointing up a serious issue that is going to arise. The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, in its Ag Climatise policy, is envisaging a mitigation of 15% in the agricultural sector. If agriculture accounts for 15% of an overall 51% reduction, that means a 70% reduction is...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: I do not believe net zero for the electricity sector by 2030 is achievable. If the policy is built on that, we would be sending the Minister on a task I doubt he could deliver. Also, there is something of a misconception here. Our commitment under the Paris Agreement is as a member of the European Union. The European Union introduced an emissions trading system whose purpose is to try to...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: I think that this is a very unfair presentation of what the section is about, which is in respect of the Minister issuing guidelines to local authorities so that they can prepare a local authority climate action plan. The idea of this is that local authorities will be to the forefront of driving climate action to ensure that by moving early, there will not be the sort of consequences that...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (9 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: This is a really important piece of legislation and the committee has done a formidable amount of work in preparing both pre-legislative scrutiny and this Committee Stage debate. From the number of amendments withdrawn during the course of this debate, it will be a long Report Stage in the House. I am sure the Minister of State and the Minister will be put through their paces whether the...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (8 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: I favour the Minister's approach over the alternative here. The amendment gives the impression that much of this change is avoidable and that we can start to assess in an academic way the impacts on different sectors. It suggests that if we think they are too great, there is some way in which we can prevent them or insulate against them. We have to have a dialogue of the sort the Minister...

Select Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment: Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed) (8 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: To clarify, what the programme for Government plans is that the just transition commissioner will be established as a statutory office with appropriate staffing and resources and that a just transition plan to frame the work of the permanent commission for just transition will be put in place. This is not a non-statutory promise of the sort Deputy Whitmore describes, it is an institutional...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Crime Prevention (3 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: 115. To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the way her Department intends to support the implementation of the proposals within a report completed by a person (details supplied) on challenges of criminal activities affecting the community in Dublin 17. [28087/21]

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Crime Prevention (3 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: This question relates to the progress in implementing the policing dimensions of a report by Jack Nolan, a former senior garda, into the problems and "enduring challenges", as he called them, in an area of Dublin 17.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Crime Prevention (3 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: Is the Minister of State in a position to report on whether there is any progress in, as she rightly says, the disruption of crime gangs that are a real problem? In the prevention of young people getting sucked into the backwash of the drugs trade and in the setting up a structured community policing for those three neighbourhoods, do we have concrete evidence of new resources and methods in...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Crime Prevention (3 Jun 2021)

Richard Bruton: I very much appreciate that. Can the Minister of State monitor the progress indicators of that initiative over time? Also, is she involved in the action, as envisaged in the programme for Government, of looking at districts like this on a wider basis and mirroring what happened in the north-east inner city, where there could be an education dimension, a youth services dimension, a tenancy...

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