Galway West TD Hildegarde Naughton has drawn attention to Ireland’s failure to reach its 2020 targets on climate change, saying ‘we have not paid sufficient attention to this issue’.
The Fine Gael TD was speaking in support of the creation of a Joint Committee on Climate Action to consider the recommendations of the Citizen’s Assembly.
The new committee will be made up sixteen (or fewer) TDs, with five members appointed by the Government; four members appointed by Fianna Fáil; two members by Sinn Féin; and the remainder by the smaller parties.
Deputy Naughton said that as she served on the Special Committee on the Eighth Amendment, she can attest to the value of such a committee.
She said that she did not wish to criticise the Minister or his Department, but said that the issue of climate change has not had enough attention.
“To put it very simply; climate change has not got the attention or action it deserves because the Department, and my committee, must consider a whole range of other subjects within our remit.
“Important matters such as public service broadcasting, the media landscape in general, broadband and a myriad of other issues take up time that we could otherwise devote to climate action.
“The fact that we are going to miss our 2020 targets by a considerable margin illustrates the point that we have not paid sufficient attention to this issue,” she said.
Deputy Naughton added that she recently spoke to the Taoiseach on the issue and she can assure the Dáil of Fine Gael’s complete support in the work the committee will do.