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Joint Committee on Environment, Culture and the Gaeltacht 21 May 2013Outline Heads of the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Bill 2013 John McCarthy Assistant Secretary, Environment Division
Title/Orientation of Bill • “Climate Action” reflects: • challenge of taking action on climate change. • “Low Carbon Development” reflects: • opportunity to transition to a low-carbon economy; • balance mitigation challenge with pursuit of competitiveness in emerging global green economy. • Key orientation of the Bill: - addressing existing and future obligations of the State under EU law and international agreements.
Head 4: Low Carbon Future • Statutory requirement on Government to adopt and implement plans to enable the State to – • pursue transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient and environmentally-sustainable economy in the period to 2050. • Transition to be achieved in earliest, cost-effective manner. • Existing EU/international obligations of the State to be taken into account in making plans.
Head 5: National Low-Carbon Roadmap • Minister for Env, Comm & Local Govt to submit National Low-Carbon Roadmap to Government which will: • articulate national vision for transition to low-carbon, climate resilient and environmentally sustainable economy to 2050; and • address any existing obligation of the State under EU law or any relevant international agreement. • National roadmap to be made: • within 12 months of passing of Bill; and • at least once every 7 years thereafter.
Head 5: Sectoral Low-Carbon Roadmaps • Government will request relevant Ministers to make sectoral roadmaps which will: • be incorporated into the national roadmap; • develop further the national vision, and • set out specific policies and measures to be adopted to achieve emissions reductions and adapt to the effects of climate change. • In anticipation of the legislation, sectoral low-carbon roadmaps have already been mandated to be prepared over the course of 2013.
Heads 6/7: Expert Advisory Body • National Expert Advisory Body on Climate Change to be established: • high-level body comprising members with a broad range of expertise, specifically not a stakeholder/representative body. • Body will have a key role in progressing the national low-carbon agenda to include: • advice on road-mapping process; compliance with existing EU/International obligations; and individual mitigation and adaptation policies; and • carrying out any necessary research.
Heads 8/9: Expert Body Reporting • Annual report to Government to include: • recommendations as to the most cost effective ways of meeting the national transition vision set out in Head 4; • review of, and any appropriate recommendations relating to compliance with existing EU/International obligations; • projection of future emissions; and • findings of any research undertaken. • Body to conduct periodic reviews having regard to latest scientific, technological and policy developments.
Head 10: Annual Transition Reporting • Minister for ECLG and other Ministers responsible for sectoral roadmaps to present an Annual Transition Report to Dáil Éireann. • Minister for ECLG must include a report on compliance with existing EU/international obligations. • Sectoral Ministers must: • set out progress on policies and measures to date, and • identify corrective measures, where necessary.
Other provisions • Head 11 sets out the duties of public bodies who will be required to integrate the objectives of the National Roadmap into their strategic planning and day-to-day decision making. • Head 12 makes provision for the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government to make regulations in order to achieve the objective of the Bill as set out in Head 4. • Heads 11 and 12 require significant further work, which is on-going.