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Coveney To be Questioned on Government Climate Action Plan

22nd February 2023
Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Simon Coveney
Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Simon Coveney

Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Simon Coveney will be quizzed on the Government’s Climate Action Plan 2023 at an Oireachtas committee on Wednesday (Feb 22)

The Joint Committee on Environment and Climate Action has invited Mr Coveney, a former marine and agriculture minister who would be familiar with the implications of these aspects of the plan, to come before it.

The plan outlines what it terms a “viable pathway” to achieve a 51% reduction in Ireland’s overall greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, and net-zero emissions no later than 2050.

While agriculture is one of the main focuses, the plan seeks to bring measures that will also affect fishing vessels and benefit the marine environment.

It aims to manage land to protect “climate, biodiversity and water”, Minister for Marine Charlie McConalogue said when the plan was published last December.

Cathaoirleach of the Oireachtas committee, Green Party TD Brian Leddin said: “The Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Act 2021 provides that ministers come before the committee to discuss their department’s role in implementing the measures and achieving the targets set out in the climate action plan”.

“Over the coming weeks, the committee plans a series of such meetings. This week we look forward to meeting with Minister Coveney to discuss the actions of the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment in relation to the 2023 Climate Action Plan, and related matters,” he said.

The Joint Committee on Environment and Climate Action have 14 Members, nine from the Dáil and five from the Seanad.

The meeting in Committee Room 4 at 5.30 pm today (February 22nd) can be viewed live on Oireachtas TV.

Committee proceedings can also be viewed on the Houses of the Oireachtas Smartphone App, available for Apple and Android devices. Team

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Marine Wildlife Around Ireland One of the greatest memories of any day spent boating around the Irish coast is an encounter with marine wildlife.  It's a thrill for young and old to witness seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales right there in their own habitat. As boaters fortunate enough to have experienced it will testify even spotting a distant dorsal fin can be the highlight of any day afloat.  Was that a porpoise? Was it a whale? No matter how brief the glimpse it's a privilege to share the seas with Irish marine wildlife.

Thanks to the location of our beautiful little island, perched in the North Atlantic Ocean there appears to be no shortage of marine life to observe.

From whales to dolphins, seals, sharks and other ocean animals this page documents the most interesting accounts of marine wildlife around our shores. We're keen to receive your observations, your photos, links and youtube clips.

Boaters have a unique perspective and all those who go afloat, from inshore kayaking to offshore yacht racing that what they encounter can be of real value to specialist organisations such as the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) who compile a list of sightings and strandings. The IWDG knowledge base has increased over the past 21 years thanks in part at least to the observations of sailors, anglers, kayakers and boaters.

Thanks to the IWDG work we now know we share the seas with dozens of species who also call Ireland home. Here's the current list: Atlantic white-sided dolphin, beluga whale, blue whale, bottlenose dolphin, common dolphin, Cuvier's beaked whale, false killer whale, fin whale, Gervais' beaked whale, harbour porpoise, humpback whale, killer whale, minke whale, northern bottlenose whale, northern right whale, pilot whale, pygmy sperm whale, Risso's dolphin, sei whale, Sowerby's beaked whale, sperm whale, striped dolphin, True's beaked whale and white-beaked dolphin.

But as impressive as the species list is the IWDG believe there are still gaps in our knowledge. Next time you are out on the ocean waves keep a sharp look out!