Sinn Féin Environment Spokesperson Philip McGuigan MLA has today said the DAERA Minister’s welcome words on climate change must be followed by urgent action.
The North Antrim MLA was speaking following a statement in the Assembly by the DAERA Minister in which he outlined plans for a new Green Growth Strategy.
Philip McGuigan MLA said:
“The Minister’s statement on a Green Growth strategy is timely and welcome, especially as we face a deep and protracted recession as a result of COVID-19.
“However, far too often those in positions of responsibility make warm words about the climate and fail to follow it up with action.
“Indeed, many of the long-term changes outlined in the statement fall far outside the Minister’s responsibility. For months, the Minister has resisted introducing a Climate Change Act that would legally bind his Department and all the Executive into sectoral emissions reduction targets. This would ensure that today’s words become a hard reality.
“This act must be introduced now to ensure any economic plans in response to COVID-19 set a course for rapid emissions reduction.
“Any economic stimulus must transform our economy and set it on a path to net zero carbon by at least 2045.
“Sinn Féin have been calling for a Just Transition Commission to be established to bring together all groups in society to map out this path together. I am calling on the Minister to support this proposal.”