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Another promise fails to live past the press release - Ferris

14 November, 2006

The Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Natural Resources, Martin Ferris TD, has questioned the Government's commitment to meeting its ambitious targets for renewable energy in the light of a reports that Bus Átha Cliath has completely failed to implement a commitment to use biofuels in its fleet of tour buses. Only five of 23 buses are using any biofuels and only in the ratio of 5:95%.

The Kerry North TD said: "The Bus Átha Cliath Dublin Bus plan was launched with great fanfare by Minister Cullen in May but it would appear that like so many other Government commitments it did not survive the initial press release. The Governments Green Paper has set laudably ambitious targets for the replacement of fossil based vehicle fuels, ahead even of EU targets, but there is little chance of these being met if public companies are acting in the manner of Bus Átha Cliath.

"I have raised this issue on numerous occasions, in and out of Leinster House, and despite this state being clearly behind target on the production and use of biofuels we are repeatedly assured that targets will be met. Having also met with companies involved in producing biofuels I am satisfied that not enough is being done by the Government to encourage either the growing of energy crops nor their processing or use.

"Unless this happens we will end up in a situation where we fall behind EU targets and are forced to replace dependency on imported fossil fuels for dependency on imported biofuels. Except whereas the supply of oil is out of our hands we could, and should, be producing sufficient energy crops and biofuels here."


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