New report shows that implementing the Paris Agreement is good for jobs and good for the economy
And as the Bill to ban offshore drilling is caught up in a procedural wrangle at an Oireachtas Committee, a new briefing on 5 reasons we should pass it.
February 12 2019, 04:16pm
The Stop Climate Chaos Coalition has today (12 February 2019) welcomed a new report highlighting the positive economic and employment impacts for Europe of implementing the Paris Climate Agreement.
The report, published by Eurofound – the Dublin-based EU agency that monitors living and working conditions across the EU – shows that a full transition towards a low-carbon economy, as defined by the Paris Climate Agreement, is projected to contribute 1.1% growth in GDP, and 0.5% growth in employment between now and 2030. This additional growth compares to a ‘business as usual’ baseline forecast, and contrasts with much commentary that claims that climate action would damage the economy.
Jennifer Higgins, Policy and Advocacy Advisor with Christian Aid Ireland stated,
‘This report highlights the economic benefits of implementing the Paris Agreement without further delay, and the positive growth implications for the European region. Even though the projected impact for Ireland is moderate compared to some of our European neighbours, it is still positive.
‘These results provide further evidence, as if more was needed, to the Government that we can’t afford to adopt a wait-and-see approach to taking climate action. Adopting the necessary policy measures now will ensure that all of society can benefit from the move to a low carbon future, not just in terms of health and wellbeing but also economically.”
The report attributes the additional economic growth to the investment and labour activity needed to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement, combined with lower spending on fossil fuel imports.
The publication of the report comes one year to the week since a majority in the Dáil voted in favour of the Petroleum and Other Minerals Development (Amendment) (Climate Emergency Measures) Bill, a Private Members Bill seeking to prohibit the issuing of licences for exploration of fossil fuels off Ireland’s coasts.
After public hearings by an Oireachtas Committee, the Bill is now caught in a procedural dispute as to whether it needs a majority of the Joint Committee of TDs and Senators to progress it, or just a majority of the Select Committee of TDs only. Before Christmas, the Joint Committee was deadlocked, with tied votes.
The Committees will meet again next Tuesday to try to break the deadlock. In case we lose sight of the big picture Stop Climate Chaos – the civil society coalition campaigning for Ireland to do its fair share to tackle climate change – has produced a new briefing outlining five main reasons why the Bill should move to Third stage without delay. We believe this Bill is necessary, practicable and in the national and global interest.
Cliona Sharkey, Policy Advisor with Trócaire said,
"The impacts of climate change are already too much for the most vulnerable people in the world. The number of climate-related disasters such as extreme heat, drought, floods and storms has doubled between 1990 and 2016, resulting in loss of lives, increases in hunger and malnutrition.
"We have all witnessed the impacts in Europe and Ireland in recent years aswell. Ireland’s Environmental Protection Agency has told policymakers that extreme weather events linked to climate change over recent years have already seriously tested the capacity of communities and services in Ireland, and the economy to cope."
Catherine Devitt, policy coordinator with the Coalition said that,
"The Eurofound report demonstrates why legislation such as the Fossil Fuel Divestment Act (2018), and the Climate Emergency Measures Bill, which is currently in the Dáil, are central to shifting investment towards the green economy and green growth. Passage of the Climate Emergency Bill will give investors a clear indication of Ireland’s commitment to the Paris Agreement, and where it intends to prioritise job creation and economic growth in the years ahead."