Alternative land uses could provide positive returns, rather than the losses that beef production entails. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

As Ireland’s economy has recovered, there has been a steady increase since 2014 in our greenhouse gas emissions. If Ireland is to have any chance of (...)

The coal and peat industries must be phased out, while oil imports are radically reduced. We also need to transition from beef farming to more sustainable uses of land.

We are hurtling towards a climate breakdown. Concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere passed 415 parts per million for the first time in hum(...)

There is no arguing with the fact that the last Citizens’ Assembly, chaired by Ms Justice Mary Laffoy (above), and the Constitutional Convention that preceded it were a great success. Photograph: Tom Honan

The Government’s decision to convene two new citizens’ assemblies, one to consider local government in Dublin and the other to deal with gender equali(...)

A Citizens’ Assembly on Dublin will examine a number of issues, indicating its remit will be broader than the question of a directly elected mayor for the capital. File photograph: Frank Miller

Changing the structure of councils in Dublin – where there are currently four local authorities – is to be discussed by a new Citizens’ Assembly on go(...)

“We are leading worldwide in how much wind-generated electricity we integrate into our grid.” Photograph: Ben Curtis/PA

This is an unprecedented time for climate policy in Ireland. The electorate wants the political system to deliver on climate action and at the same ti(...)

Essentially, voters didn’t see the point of paying a directly-elected mayor a handsome salary and even more money for special advisers when local government in Ireland is in the ha’penny place. Photograph: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

The dismal outcome of plebiscites on directly-elected mayors, with the proposition being narrowly defeated in both Cork and Waterford and carried by a(...)

A million animal and plant species  are threatened with extinction – more than at any other time in human history

In our hyper health-conscious times, it’s hard to imagine anyone advocating a lifestyle that encourages people to smoke too much, drink too much, neve(...)

Draft proposal on climate disruption aims for   70 per cent of Irish electricity needs to  come from renewable sources by 2030. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

The use of the term “climate disruption” in the title of the Government’s plan to respond to a rapidly warming world suggests there is finally a minds(...)

The impact on cities, the biggest source of emissions on a per capita basis, will be dramatic, given what is envisaged in the electrification of transport and the built environment. File photograph: Alexander Becher/EPA

The draft Government plan on responding to a warming world that potentially poses an existential threat to humanity sets out its ambition succinctly: (...)

Irish butterfly populations have declined by  12 per cent over the past decade.

The latest evaluation of biodiversity loss in Ireland confirms potentially-catastrophic species loss and deterioration of globally-important habitats (...)

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