[Short? thread 1/n] The new Irish Climate Action Bill is now in Select Committee stage. The full list of proposed amendments is here: data.oireachtas.ie/ie/oireachtas/…
[2/n] Dedicated followers [?] will recall that I, together with Prof. John Sweeney and @AndrewLRJackson previously raised significant concerns about the way the "2021-2030 interim target" was being transposed into the Bill:
[3/n] #TLDR: the 2020 Programme for Government committed to "to an average 7% per annum reduction in overall greenhouse gas emissions from 2021 to 2030 (a 51% reduction over the decade)". Govt subsequently agreed to put this on a binding statutory basis via the new Bill...
[4/n] However: we argued that the proposed s.6A(5), purporting to do this, was flawed both legally and scientifically...
[5/n] We offered two possible amendments to fix this. Govt has now brought forward it own (different) version: number 107 in the consolidated list.
[6/n] This codifies what we called "interpretation B" of the original draft. It does not address ANY of our criticism of that!
[7/n] It remains legally obscure: as there is no direct relationship between the budget for 2021-2030 and the emissions in any individual year (by design) it is entirely unclear how the Council is to "provide for" emissions having a certain value in one year.
[8/n] It sets NO clear maximum to the budget the Council may propose for the period: not ruling out EVEN that of the "fancifully precipitous predatory delay" pathway described here: villagemagazine.ie/the-climate-bi…
[9/n] NB: I certainly hope that the Council would NOT bring forward such a budget. But the point is that Govt wants credit for putting a meaningful limit, related to the original "7% p.a./51% overall" PfG commitment on a statutory footing...
[10/n] But their proposed amendment simply doesn't do that. I *think* I understand the political theatre behind this fudge. But it represents a tremendous failure of leadership by [whichever?] Govt party is blocking a meaningful statutory constraint.
[ends! - phew...]
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More from @autofac

23 Mar
The revised draft of the new Climate Bill (now "signed off" by government) has landed! I know many long, hard, hours went into this: well done to all, but especially @EamonRyan. Announcement and text here: gov.ie/en/publication…
It's not perfect, no bill could satisfy all demands: but for myself, on first speed read, this version has moved a *long* way and deserves wide support!
It now correctly identifies the overarching goals of climate mitigation policy as being, from the top, the "ultimate objective" of the UNFCCC: stabilization of GHG concentrations at a level preventing dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system...
Read 11 tweets
22 Mar
Oisín list of things to look out for is a good one...
Albeit I have some slightly different perspectives...
I think "net zero" framing (and therefore even "achieve net zero by 2050 at the latest") is flawed and misleading. Commitment should be a fair share contribution to the Paris temperature goals (Article 2.1 is much more important than 4.1!).
Read 8 tweets
21 Dec 20
@HannahEDaly @KOSullivanIT @IrishTimes Of course the "profile" of *measures* is different. That's exactly *why* we have to compare their relative effects - accurately! Effects on *temp rise*. If we don't compare *somehow* we have no basis for saying what is "cost-effective" between these sectors.
@HannahEDaly @KOSullivanIT @IrishTimes As for N2O: I don't understand at all. For N2O (as for CO2) GWP-100 and GWP* are identical, and there is no suggestion in the literature of any problem using this as a valid basis for "fungibility" of reductions between them - is there?
@HannahEDaly @KOSullivanIT @IrishTimes But again: "cost-effective" by definition means least cost for a given, consistently defined and assessed, *outcome*. If we don't compare common outcomes (temp rise) across CO2, N2O, CH4 mitigation, we are simply not doing cost-effectiveness analysis.
Read 4 tweets
10 Nov 20
It's been a while in the pipeline, but delighted to share this news! Thanks to all the project team, and to the excellent EPA Steering Committee for their help and support.
Big shoutout to: Mike Jones (TCD), Paul Price aka @swimsure (DCU), Alwynne McGeever and Paul Rice who all made huge contributions to bringing this to completion. And to @EPAResearchNews for providing the essential funding support.
In (very!) brief: It is now scientifically understood that effective climate action sets a finite limit on total future net emissions of carbon dioxide (CO₂) from human activities: the "forever" Global Carbon Budget.
Read 14 tweets
10 Sep 20
"Energy transition poses challenges and opportunities for energy security. Read latest @SEAI_ie blog by @dineenden and download recent Energy Security in Ireland report." seai.ie/blog/energy-se…
Some nuggets (a thread, 1/n)...
"Energy security is complex because it comprises many diverse elements. There are also intricate interactions with
the other two important pillars of energy policy: sustainability and competitiveness." <sigh> ienets.eeng.dcu.ie/all-blogs/Ener…
Read 13 tweets
24 Feb 20
@365Ifarm @dcu_ecrn @swimsure We are still working on the seminar materials - but everything presented will certainly be made available afterward.
@365Ifarm @dcu_ecrn @swimsure The project we are reporting on was a small desk-study, reviewing international literature to support @EPAResearchNews scope a possible future larger scale study.
@365Ifarm @dcu_ecrn @swimsure @EPAResearchNews So "proposals" are primarily just about possible scope and methodologies for that future project (if it is indeed progressed).
Read 9 tweets

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