According to the Climate Change Advisory Council, Ireland is not on course to reach its 2020 and 2030 climate change targets. The State’s climate change watchdog has also warned that Ireland will struggle to meet the Government’s objective of decarbonising the economy by 2050.
The Council called the policies being pursued to reverse Ireland’s record were as “inadequate” claiming the recession was the only single policy which worked to reduce emissions. For 2016, emissions increased by 3.6 per cent and were back to levels last seen as the economy was crashing in 2009.
Calling for the implementation of a policy framework by Government, the Council believes that incentives should be enacted to encourage people to make changes in their behaviour in order to cut emissions.
The advisory body has also recommended an increase in carbon taxes to drive alternative energy approaches and they have proposed an increase in carbon tax from €20 per tonne to €30 per tonne in the next budget and to €80 per tonne by 2030.
In 2009, Ireland signed up to binding EU targets to reduce emissions and has consistently lagged behind triggering fears the State will face fines of up to €600 million after 2020 from the European Commission. So far 11 Member States have reached their 2020 targets with Sweden leading the way and due to reach their 2030 target later this year.
Investing in wind energy, Sweden will have 3,681 windmills by the end of the year generating 12 gigawatts of energy. In 2011, wind accounted for only 3 gigawatts.
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