|The logo has the slogan - - Ireland's plan of action on climate change - - There was no plan today at the high-profile launch of a publicity campaign. Only if governing was about spending an advertising budget!! |
Taoiseach Bertie Ahern and Minister for the Environment John Gormley have today launched a major new climate change awareness campaign which calls on all sectors of Irish society to respond to the challenge of global warming.
The launch of the campaign came with a clear message - Ireland must take action, urgently, to reduce our impact on climate change and make long-term lifestyle and workplace changes. The launch was also attended by the Tánaiste Brian Cowen, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, John Browne and Minister of State Tony Killeen.
We've had various high profile Government launches in recent years. Usually there is a plan even though the execution is generally expected to leave a lot to be desired. This time, there is no plan or even limited specifics. It is simply a publicity campaign the most convenient tool in the ministerial armoury.
The five-year campaign will see Government working in partnership with business, farming, forestry, the tourism sector, the public sector, local communities and the general public to increase awareness of climate change and to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases across Irish society and the economy. It will do this through intensive stakeholder engagement and through providing people with the information and tools they need to tackle their impact on the world’s climate in their personal and work lives.
An Taoiseach said that we cannot ignore climate change, it is a reality and presents a significant risk to our future well-being. “While Ireland accounts for a relatively small proportion of global emissions, we have as much a responsibility as any country to reduce our impact on the world’s climate,” said An Taoiseach. “We must work together to tackle the challenges of Climate Change and seize the opportunities that it presents.”
Gormley said: “This Government will show leadership and will set the framework by which Ireland can meet its emissions targets. But Government can only do so much. This Government initiative will tap into Ireland’s enormous wealth of human, intellectual, innovative and common-sense resources.”
The campaign call to action, “Change Your World. Change the World,” encourages people to make local changes that will have positive impacts for Ireland and for the rest of the world too. The campaign is taking a partnerships approach and will work with all of the sectors to inform them about the problem and show them how to make changes towards a solution.
The Change Plan of Action includes an advertising and information campaign to build understanding of Climate Change and its potential impacts on Irish society and business, extensive ongoing liaison with and training for the public sector, business and industry regarding green procurement and carbon management, as well as activities and events to encourage and empower individuals, communities, schools and 3rd level education campuses to make changes to the way they behave.
“Each of us can play our part in reducing Ireland’s emissions and I call on everybody to get involved. A key aspect of this Plan of Action is that it will engage directly with specific sectors and work in partnership with them to address their emissions,” the Taoiseach said.
Ahern added: “We are living in a carbon constrained world. Our emissions of greenhouse gases now have a price. As a society and an economy we must become more carbon efficient, to protect our futures and our competitiveness.”
“The Kyoto Protocol comes into force on 1st January 2008 and we have placed a limit on the amount of greenhouse gases we can emit. This is only the start. The EU has undertaken to further cut emissions to at least 20% below 1990 levels by 2020. Ireland will play its full part in reaching this goal.” Ahern continued,
“We must work together to tackle the challenges of Climate Change and seize the opportunities that it presents. Each of us can play our part in reducing Ireland’s emissions and I call on everybody to get involved. A key aspect of this Plan of Action is that it will engage directly with specific sectors and work in partnership with them to address their emissions.” the Taoiseach added
John Gormley, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Heritage & Local Government said: “Our plan is to work closely with each sector of our economy, with the public sector, with agriculture, with the non-government sector, with communities and with individuals to create a change generation that understands the profound challenges that climate change presents.”
He continued: “The central theme of this Change Plan of Action is a challenge to the Irish Nation to change the way we think about climate change when it comes to travel, work, business, home and leisure.”
“We all have a vested interest in succeeding in this objective and we all have a responsibility to play our part,” said Gormley. “Doing nothing is not an option. Our only option is to change – Change how we think about climate change and change our behaviour to quickly embrace the reality that we are living in a world in which emissions of greenhouse gases are being progressively restricted.”
“As we roll out the National Climate Change Strategy and the provisions of the Programme for Government, new regulations and policies will be implemented that will encourage more efficient use of energy. These will address emissions in transport, the residential sector; the industrial, commercial and services sectors; in agriculture, and forestry; in waste management and throughout the Public Sector. In other words, climate policies will touch on almost all aspects of our lives,” said Gormley.
Publicity Campaign website: www.changenow.ie .
Taxes or Carbon Emissions Trading in Post-Kyoto Regimes
UN Human Development Report 2007/2008 calls for Developed Countries to shoulder biggest burden on climate change measures
Climate change: EU on track towards Kyoto target - Ireland to meet target via purchase of carbon credits
Finfacts Climate Change Reports - access on right-hand column of home page.