"You don’t need to be a climate expert for your opinion to be valued; we want to hear from as many people as possible. This will shape the next Climate Action Plan."
The Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan, today launched the Climate Conversation 2022. People across the country are invited to have their say on how we can all play our part in securing our sustainable future. The Climate Conversation 2022 will feed into, and shape, the next iteration of the Climate Action Plan.
An online questionnaire is now open, where people can give their views on shopping; reuse and recycling; food and food waste; heating our homes and sustainable living; our local environment; and climate change. People can also have their say on how actions in these areas by individuals, communities and Government can help us realise this ambition of becoming a carbon-neutral society.
Commenting on the launch of Climate Conversation 2022, Minister Ryan said:
"Reaching our ambitious climate goals will require changes to many aspects of our lives including our homes and workplaces, how we power and heat them, how we travel, how we grow our food, how much waste we create, and how we manage that waste.
"Everyone, including Government, communities, industry and individuals, will need to work together to make Ireland carbon-neutral for a sustainable future. That’s why it’s so important for people to have their say on how we can all contribute to this ambitious goal, how it will affect their lives in practical ways and importantly how we, as a government, can engage, enable, and empower people to adapt and realise the opportunities this transition presents. We have made significant progress on Climate Action Plan 2021, but we have a huge task to bridge the gap between where we are now, and where we need to get to by 2030, and 2050.
"Stark greenhouse gas emissions projections, released recently by the EPA, underpin the urgency and importance of taking decisive action, not just for individuals and business but across Government. Inaction in any sector now will simply create a greater burden, for us all, in the years ahead."
The Minister added:
"Becoming a climate-resilient society and economy will help us to cope with the impacts of a changing climate. Hearing from people from across the country in different age groups and in different locations means that we can support positive climate action steps – steps that people will be able to take. You don’t need to be a climate expert for your opinion to be valued; we want to hear from as many people as possible. All of this will feed into ongoing work on Climate Action Plan 2023."
Citizens and communities can visit the Climate Conversation portal and share views on our collective goals, what has been achieved, and what more could be done to support communities on climate action. The Climate Jargon Buster is designed to help as people read through the content and questions.
Climate Conversation 2022 is being conducted in line with strict data protection rules, and for this reason is open only to those over 16. Under 16s will be consulted through focus groups and representatives from the National Youth Assembly on Climate.
To engage, enable and empower everyone in society to help us co-design the annual Climate Action Plan, the Government of Ireland established the National Dialogue on Climate Action (NDCA). The NDCA has 3 main aims:
The NDCA is delivered through an annual programme of events – centred around our Climate Conversations.
As part of Climate Conversation 2021, we engaged with over 3,800 people, held workshops with Public Participation Networks (PPNs), talked to various stakeholders, and to young people (through Comhairle ná Nóg groups). These findings were published in our Climate Conversations Report. We heard a voice of a public who are responsive, feel a sense of urgency and are enthusiastic to work with Government. We were able to identify where people are making changes, and where they feel they lack information, knowledge, resources, or capacity.
This year, we are building on what we learned last year and we are expanding our programme. We are partnering with community groups and representative bodies to reach a broad cross section of Irish society, including those who may be particularly affected by our transition to carbon neutrality. Our aim is to make the Climate Action Plan accessible to all through the Climate Conversations and we urge everyone to have their say; it’s our future!
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