Irwin urges ‘climate reality check’

Newry & Armagh DUP Assemblyman William Irwin MLA has urged local farmers to contact their Assembly members in each constituency and make them aware of their views on the Climate Change Private Members Bill.
William Irwin MLAWilliam Irwin MLA
William Irwin MLA

Mr Irwin said that as he continued to listen to parties within the DAERA Committee at Stormont respond to various experts, he was left concerned by their ‘oblivious attitude and casual disregard to expert opinion’.

Mr Irwin said: “As the current process of deliberating on the Green Party Private Members Bill continues in the committee, I am concerned again by the responses from parties in regards to the very clear advice and evidence presented by experts in regards to the impacts of the targets set out in the PMB.”

He added: “The fact there is a competitive element in this debate, with Claire Bailey pressing ahead with a Private Members Bill when the department is rightly progressing its legislation, simply boggles the mind.

“For such a widely encompassing matter to be the subject of a ‘tug of war’ in terms of legislative authority, helps no one and in fact is a disservice to our agri-food sector and indeed ultimately the climate.

“I would again ask the Green Party to consider the impact of what amounts to their overreaching and flawed proposals on climate change.”

He added: “All the evidence to date has pointed to the requirement for legislation to 
have achievable aims and the 
importance of Minister Poots’ 
legislation is that it is taken forward as part of the United Kingdom’s strategy on emissions reduction.

“With this holistic plan Northern Ireland plays its part by playing to its strengths, with legislation that acknowledges the key realities of the geographical and economical position of the Province within the UK context.

“To unhitch Northern Ireland to pursue its own wildly over ambitious and counterproductive legislation, as the Green Party would wish, is a massive backward step on climate change which would see our agri-food industry dealt a massive blow, food security negatively impacted and our consumer need serviced by countries with poor emissions controls.”