2030 Climate Target Plan:
The European Commission in Sept 2020 presented its plan to reduce EU greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030, compared to 1990 levels. This level of ambition for the next decade will put the EU on a balanced pathway to reaching climate neutrality by 2050. The new target is based on a comprehensive Impact Assessment of the social, economic and environmental impacts. The Assessment demonstrates that this course of action is realistic and feasible. This raised ambition also underlines the EU's continued global leadership, ahead of the next UN climate conference (COP26).
The Commission in Sept 2020:
- tabled an amendment to the proposed European Climate Law, to include the 2030 emissions reduction target of at least 55% as a stepping stone to the 2050 climate neutrality goal;
- invited the Parliament and Council to confirm this 55% target as the EU's new Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement, and to submit this to the UNFCCC by the end of this year;
set out the legislative proposals to be presented by June 2021 to implement the new target, including: revising and expanding the EU Emissions Trading System; adapting the Effort Sharing Regulation and the framework for land use emissions; reinforcing energy efficiency and renewable energy policies; and strengthening CO2 standards for road vehicles
Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2020
The Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill is an ambitious piece of legislation. It commits us, in law, to move to a climate resilient and climate neutral economy by 2050.
The Programme for Government commits to a 7% average yearly reduction in overall greenhouse gas emissions over the next decade, and to achieving net zero emissions by 2050. This Bill will drive implementation of a suite of policies to help us achieve this goal.
The Bill brings in a system of 5-year economy-wide carbon budgets, which will outline a ceiling for total greenhouse gas emissions. These will be prepared by the Climate Change Advisory Council and presented to Government to consider and approve, with input from the Oireachtas.
The Bill includes the following key elements:
- Establishes a 2050 emissions target
- Introduces system of successive 5-year, economy-wide carbon budgets starting in 2021
- Strengthens the role of the Climate Change Advisory Council in proposing carbon budgets
- Introduces a requirement to annually revise the Climate Action Plan and prepare a National Long Term Climate Action Strategy at least every decade
- Introduces a requirement for all Local Authorities to prepare individual Climate Action Plans which will include both mitigation and adaptation measures
- Gives a stronger oversight role for the Oireachtas through an Oireachtas Committee
This legislation sends a clear signal to businesses, to farmers and to our communities that climate action is good for the economy. It will allow us to reach our climate targets while creating jobs and sustainable growth in new sectors.
Climate Action Plan
In 2019, Government published its Climate Action Plan in response to climate change and the commitments entered into as a member of the European Union.
Within this plan, there are many ambitious targets to meet our obligations as members. The main targets of the plan to be implemented by 2030 are:
70% of all electricity generated to be from renewable sources • 500,000 existing homes to be upgraded to B2 Building Energy rating (BER) • Homeowners to generate their own electricity and sell back to the grid under scheme for micro-generation • 600,000 heat pumps installed (400,000 in existing buildings)
Programme for government - Our Shared Future’
In Government’s ‘programme for government - Our Shared Future’, this document is a commitment from the proposed coalition Government to publish a National Retrofitting Plan as part of the National Economic Plan which will set out their commitment to:
• Developing a new area-based and one-stop shop approach to retrofitting, to upgrade at least 500,000 homes to a B2 by 2030 (as per the CAP).
• Grouping homes together to lower cost, starting in the Midlands area.
• Leveraging smart finance (e.g. loan guarantee, European Investment Bank, Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI)).
• Developing easy-payback mechanisms (i.e. through utility bills).
United Nationals Sustainable Development Goals
Ireland's Sustainable Development Goals National Implementation Plan 2018-2020 provides a whole-of-Government approach to implement the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The plan sets out the Government's ambitious response to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and commits Ireland to fully achieving all 17 of the Goals by 2030. The Department of Communication, Climate Action and Environment has responsibility for officially reporting on Ireland's progress toward meeting the SDG targets and the CSO has a central role in the identification, management, and presentation of the data needed to meet the requirements of the SDG Indicators.
While Governments have primary responsibility for implementing the SDG's, the Goals do not belong to Governments alone. To achieve the SDG's, Governments, businesses, communities and individuals will all have to work together. The SDG's therefore encompass all of civil society. We believe that the SCSI have their part to play in this, as an important component of the Built Environment. Many goals are wrapped up in what we do.
EU Renovation Wave:
EU Circular Economy Action Plan:
EU taxonomy for sustainable activities