Moving to a post carbon world
After the COP 21 summit in Paris, all countries are taking measures to reduce their carbon emissions.
Ireland is a small country with a relatively small population. However, Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions per person are amongst the highest of any country in the world. The argument that we are too small a country to make a difference holds no ground – climate change is a global problem that requires a global solution involving all countries.(EPA)
Post-Carbon Ireland is an initiative from a group of leading Irish academics, to raise the critical issue of climate action during the 2016 general election campaign, and subsequently in the negotiations leading to the election of a new Taoiseach and Government from the 32nd Dáil.
We suggest that only such a convention can enable the sustained, citizen-led, engagement that is now essential to unite all of society in planning and creating a just, managed, transition to a secure, flourishing, and authentically sustainable post-carbon world.
Watch the press conference from the launch of the http://www.postcarbonireland.org
Post election Ireland
Elections in Ireland means change also for climate regulations. Dr. Cara Augustenborg openly talks about the current situation in the Irish Examiner:
Ireland’s equivalent of the Leap Manifesto (a movement started last year in Canada by the author Naomi Klein), Post-Carbon Ireland, was launched just before the election. In an unprecedented effort by 29 academics from across the Irish universities, it called for one key action all political parties could support: the immediate establishment of a Citizens’ Convention for a Post-Carbon Ireland. The convention would enable the sustained, citizen-led engagement to unite all of society in planning and creating a just, managed, transition to a secure, flourishing, and authentically sustainable post-carbon world.
Within weeks of its launch, the convention garnered support from more than 600 signatories and received unconditional support from People Before Profit and the Green Party and equivocal support from Sinn Féin, Fianna Fáil, Labour, People Before Profit, and Fine Gael.
The overwhelming scientific evidence demonstrating on impacts of climate change and the historic UN’ Paris Climate Agreement soon to be ratified by nearly 200 nations mean climate change can no longer be ignored.
To avoid a planetary emergency, we must keep 80% of our known fossil fuel reserves in the ground and commit to no longer exploring for any more oil or gas. We must become a fossil-fuel free society by 2050, little over three decades away. To achieve this in Ireland, we have only a short window of time left to make the decisions in our transport, energy and agricultural sectors necessary for such a dramatic transition.
That means that our 32nd Dáil has some significant decisions to make in the next five years to transition to a low-carbon society, and it must involve Irish citizens in those decisions to guarantee success.
The challenge of achieving the low-carbon transition remained marginal to political debates throughout the 2016 general election campaign, further underlining the importance of the call for a citizens’ convention to raise public awareness of the issue and to generate momentum for policies to address the immense challenge of reducing Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions at the scale and speed necessary under the Paris Climate Agreement.
Now, as a new government is formed, we anxiously await the formation of this citizens’ convention to join the leap away from fossil fuels and toward a Post-Carbon Ireland.