Wednesday 16 October 2019

Climate action goes beyond measures announced in Budget 2020 - Minister

Minister for Communiations Richard Bruton TD during Budget 2020 Press conference
Photo: Gareth Chaney/Collins
Minister for Communiations Richard Bruton TD during Budget 2020 Press conference Photo: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Mícheál Ó Scannáil

Minister Richard Bruton has promised that climate action will go beyond the provisions announced in yesterday's budget.

The Minister for Climate Action and Environment praised his Fine Gael party colleague Paschal Donoghoe for "implementing our Climate Action policy front and centre".

Yesterday, the Minster for Finance announced as part of Budget 2020 that there will be a €6 per tonne increase in carbon tax. As a result, petrol and diesel prices were hiked at midnight. Other fuels won’t be impacted until May 2020 to allow for budgeting over winter.

To offset the changes, there will be a €31m fund for the Midlands to help the region deal with the impact of climate action. Workers from Bord na Mona and ESB will be the focus.

While praising these adjustments, Minister Bruton said today on RTÉ's Morning Ireland that measure for climate action go beyond the provisions put in place in Mr Donoghoe's budget.

"This is the first budget where implementing our Climate Action policy is front and centre" he said.

"And, there is a lot more besides the carbon tax. For example we will be providing an auction before the end of this year to increase our renewable power by 60pc.

"Turning to the carbon price, the signal always was that, by 2030 we would have €80 per tonne, but we have chosen to increase this in a way that’s steady – not a jolt that will put people who struggle to adjust in a really difficult situation.

"It’s important that we create the signal that says to people ‘you must now think about taking carbon out of your lifestyle’. That will take time. It has a steady trajectory - to help them – and we’re using every cent of the money to help families to make those changes."

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