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24/11/2021

Energy Charter Treaty A 'Relic Of Fossil Fuel Past' - SF

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The Irish government has been urged to withdraw from the Energy Charter Treaty, described as "a relic of a fossil fuel past".

Environment Minister Eamon Ryan has come under pressure to join the coalition of six other EU Member States, which includes France and Spain, in pressing for a withdrawal from the treaty which Sinn Féin representative Senator Lynn Boylan believes is "beyond reform".

"I welcome that Dr. Yamina Saheb from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change recommended that the government should join with other EU Member States in advocating a withdrawal from the Energy Charter Treaty when she appeared before today's meeting of the Oireachtas Committee on the Environment and Climate Action," said Senator Boylan.

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"We only have a decade left to act on climate change, but instead the EU and Ireland are wasting time by engaging in a reform process which is going nowhere.

"Reform requires unanimous support from all parties to the treaty; which is never going to happen while oil and gas producing countries have a veto.

"Even if the EU's reform proposals were accepted in their entirety, the treaty would still not be Paris compliant because as Dr. Saheb pointed out, we would be protecting emissions above the remaining carbon budget. 

"Remaining within the Energy Charter Treaty will just make the transition much more expensive because, on top of shifting society and our economy away from fossil fuels, citizens - through their government's - will also have to compensate fossil fuel investors."

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