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Carbon emissions: Coalition leaders fail to break the deadlock over new targets

Meeting of three party leaders told more time is needed

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Green Party leader Eamon Ryan, Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Photo: Niall Carson

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan, Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Photo: Niall Carson

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan, Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Tánaiste Leo Varadkar. Photo: Niall Carson

COALITION leaders have failed to break the deadlock over how much Ireland should reduce carbon emissions from agriculture by the end of the decade.

A meeting of the three party leaders on Tuesday night was told that more time is needed for further analysis as to how ambitious targets for agriculture, which accounts for nearly 40pc of all of Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions, can actually be achieved and credited to the sector.

The meeting ended without agreement with a senior Government source admitting they were not sure when a deal could be struck.

Other Coalition sources said that talks were ongoing and there would continue tonight and into Wednesday when Cabinet is due to meet.

The Government had hoped to sign off on carbon reduction targets for all sectors of the economy including agriculture by the end of July as part of its legally binding commitment to reduce emissions by 51pc by 2030.

However it how appears increasingly unlikely this will happenr.

Environment Minister Eamon Ryan, the Green Party leader, is pushing for the maximum cut of 30pc, while Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue, who is under pressure from backbenchers Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the farm lobby, wants a lower target closer to 22pc.

A compromise of between 24pc and 26pc remains under negotiation.

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