“More floods, famine and enforced migration are all on the cards if countries, such as Ireland, continue to fail to grasp the reality of climate change,” said Fianna Fáil’s Climate Action Spokesperson, Timmy Dooley as Budget 2019 failed to address the climate challenges we, as a society, face.

Deputy Dooley commented, “Despite the Taoiseach’s kite-flying in August, with his commitment for Ireland to become a world leader in climate change, the Government has done a complete U-turn on carbon tax. Actions matter, and when it comes to climate change, this Government is all talk and no action.

“Budget 2019 is a do-nothing budget on climate change. It fails to put in place the legislative, taxation and spending changes needed to make a real and discernible impact in the fight against climate change.

“The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change gave us all the the starkest warning yet that a failure to tackle climate change now will jeopardise all our futures.

“Climate change is real, and sticking our heads in the sand is no longer acceptable. It’s no longer something that affects people in far flung locations; it’s having an impact here in Ireland with unusual weather patterns including drought, freak storms and heavier than normal rainfall.

“If we are to seriously address climate change, and give our children, and our children’s children, a fighting chance, the time to act is now.

“Sitting on our hands and expecting others to do the heavy lifting for us is just not acceptable. Unless the Government acts as a catalyst for, and driver of, change, the progress we need will never be realised.

“As the ESRI pointed out at a recent Oireachtas Climate Change Committee, any further delays in taking action will simply ensure that harsher measures will be needed in the future.

“The UN’s message was simple; now is the time for political leadership. Today’s Budget announcement demonstrates that this government is incapable of showing leadership on the most pressing issue facing our planet, let alone our country,” concluded Dooley.