Opposition continues to mount to abolition of the Department of the Environment

Close to 12,000 people have now singed a petition to ask the Taoiseach Enda Kenny to reinstate the Department of Environment.

The petition has been online for less than two weeks after it was started by a number of concerned environmental groups.

Friends of the Earth, VOICE, An Taisce, BirdWatch Ireland and the Irish Wildlife Trust joined forces to raise the issue with the public and the government. Campaigners are reporting that it is having an impact.

“The good news is our campaigning is having an effect. The Tánaiste has now stated that the Government is committed to “a joined up approach to environmental policy … [with] the full attention and resources of a single Department. The final name of the Department will be confirmed by Government at a future date,” said Friends of the Earth Director Oisín Coghlan.

“But we need to keep up the pressure to make sure these encouraging words are translated into action.”

Environmentalists say the splitting of environmental functions across three departments will be damaging to Ireland’s environment. Under the proposed arrangement wildlife, water and waste will be spread across three government departments.

“This fragmentation further weakens the impact of environmental considerations on government decision-making and hampers a cohesive approach to environmental protection,” it states on the petition page.

“By reintegrating environmental functions under one minister the Government would be recognizing both the innate value of the Irish environment and our moral and legal obligations to protect, restore and enhance our environment for current and future generations.

“Otherwise Ireland will be the only EU Member State with no Minister of the Environment, a matter of considerable international embarrassment.”

Campaigners are encouraging people to continue to put the pressure on politicians. Follow the links below to make your voice heard.

Click here to sign the petition

 

Click here to share the petition on Facebook

 

Click here to share the petition on Twitter

 

Click here to send an email to you local TD

 

About the Author

Ian Carey

Ian is the editor of the Green News. He works as Communications Manger with the Irish Environmental Network.