Did Fine Gael press the EU to remove nationally binding renewable energy targets? - Lynn Boylan MEP
Sinn Fein MEP for Dublin Lynn Boylan has questioned whether the Irish Government had a role in the removal of binding national targets for 2030 Energy Directives.
Speaking after today's vote in Strasbourg, Ms Boylan said:
"Last January, the EU Parliament had a higher ambition on energy targets in its reports, and these Directives originally had binding national targets for each Member State to achieve.
"Following negotiations with the EU Council, those binding targets have been removed in favour of an EU wide target.
"Transparency within the EU Council is not exactly its forte, but there is certainly enough evidence to suggest that it would have been in the Fine Gael's Government's interests to remove binding national targets, given their track record on meeting existing targets.
"Under the 2020 targets, Ireland faces hefty fines for not meeting its 20% energy efficiency and 16% renewable energy targets.
"Currently its shift to renewable energy is not even touching 10% - an abject failure to reach this binding target.
"Now without a binding target for 2030 where is the incentive for Ireland to make real significant changes in its climate change policy?
"Climate Action Network Europe have already reported that in the past, Ireland played a negative role in international climate change negotiations so it is highly likely that they played a similar negative role at the EU negotiations on these important energy Directives.”