Environmental Pillar welcomes Ireland’s participation in the Climate and Clean Air Coalition

Statement from the Environmental Pillar, 5 June 2013:
The Environmental Pillar welcomes Ireland’s participation in the Climate and Clean Air Coalition. We agree that air pollution and climate change need to be addressed in an integrated manner. Pollutants such as black carbon have a major impact on the climate as well as human health. We have called for the inclusion in the Climate Change Bill or provisions for addressing non-gaseous climate pollutants such as black carbon. We hope that the Minister’s very welcome announcement will be reflected in the provisions of the Climate Change Bill.
Information about the Climate and Clean Air Coalition can be found here
The text of Minister Hogan’s press release is provided below:
Hogan announces Ireland to join the Climate and Clean Air Coalition
Announcement marks World Environment Day and EU Green Week 2013
To mark today’s (5 June) designation as World Environment Day by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and reflecting the Air Quality theme of EU Green Week 2013 which runs from 4-7 June, Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan announced that the Government has approved his proposal for Ireland to join the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC).  The overarching objective of the CCAC, which was established in 2012, is to reduce the impacts of short-lived climate pollutants (or SLCPs), through complementary, short-term measures for addressing climate change, under the overall stewardship of UNEP.
Ireland is joining over 30 developed and developing countries, as well as representatives of business, environmental NGOs and the scientific research community, in seeking to collaborate and progress a range of initiatives that can complement work being progressed under the UN Framework Convention for Climate Change to reduce emissions of harmful greenhouse gases and help to slow and ultimately reverse the trend of increasing global temperatures.  In deciding to join the Coalition, Minister Hogan highlighted the importance of working with other progressive countries and partners to take action that can address both climate change and air pollution issues.
“With 2013 designated as the EU Year of Air, and building on substantive discussions at the Irish EU Presidency’s recent Environment Ministers’ Informal Council meeting in Dublin in April on the linked issues of air quality in the urban environment and climate change, I believe that it is hugely important that we in Ireland affirm our own commitment to achieving environmental improvements in both air quality and climate policies.  It is also important that we assist others through sharing our experiences and expertise in addressing national and cross-border effects of air pollution through, for example, our smoky coal ban which has been so successful in improving urban air quality in Ireland and which I recently extended to additional towns.”
The Minister continued: “The potential for supporting and facilitating specific initiatives under the Coalition will help to deliver climate change benefits and improve human health outcomes by addressing short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) such as black carbon and ozone, as well as ensuring greater policy coherence across all levels of governance – local, regional, national and supranational.”