The government is edging closer to a deal in climate talks, with hopes of a deal before the end of the week.
However, while the path to an agreement has been mapped out, several sources involved in the negotiations cautioned that key issues still need to be resolved and that no overall agreement has been reached.
The Coalition is scrambling to secure an agreement on key climate targets with fears that a failure to find a solution could delay a decision on an issue of utmost importance to the Green Party until at least the autumn. can
One source suggested that Green Party leader Eamonn Ryan was refusing to go below 26 per cent in agricultural sector emissions, while Agriculture Minister Charlie McConlogh had refused to go beyond 24 per cent. In case of no agreement, the leaders of the coalition parties will be asked to take the final decision.
Multiple sources said a draft memorandum is being prepared for coalition leaders, meaning an emergency cabinet meeting could be held on Wednesday night or early Thursday morning if it is agreed.
Coalition insiders say neither side will emerge as a clear winner in the talks, even if they end successfully. And that will frustrate stakeholders on all sides.
Earlier today, Mr Ryan said he was “hopeful we can get there” on an agreement on emissions targets but that “nothing is certain yet”.
Speaking after the cabinet meeting, Mr Ryan said “we are still working on things”. He declined to comment on the chair’s remarks by Green Party senator Pauline O’Reilly that it would not “compete” with lower levels of cuts for farming, saying she had Didn’t hear his interview.
Senator O’Reilly said on Wednesday it was time for Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael to “show their true colours” when it came to emissions targets and not “greenwash”.
When asked if the low-emissions target for agriculture was worth leaving the government with, she said she didn’t think the Green Party could “compete” with figures as high as 22 percent or 23 percent. is, as at the end of the day “Agriculture in Ireland at its present level is unsustainable.”
“At the end of the day it can’t wait, we need to stop talking, we need to agree a target and get on with the necessary action”, he told RTÉ radio’s Today Show. . “I’m not sure it would be useful to wait until September. This issue has to be dealt with urgently – I’ve seen what the Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael backbenchers are saying, but at the end of the day it comes down to this. Leaders agree.
“We went into government with Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, they agreed to a 51 per cent reduction by 2030 as indeed Sinn Féin did – all these parties need to show their true colors now.
“Every percentage point is less than 30 percent (for the agriculture sector) so other sectors have to do more. That’s important.”
Senator O’Reilly said it is not fair for the Green Party not to be in government, nor is it fair for the party not to meet its goals.
“Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael now need to show their true colors and not greenwash and actually show that all sectors have a role to play. It is clear from this news that the Taoiseach has said That we are in an emergency.
Separately, Fianna Fáil TD Barry Cowen has said it would be better to wait until the autumn for a decision on agricultural emissions.
He said the government’s program referred to the special social and economic position of agriculture in climate plans and sectoral ceilings and raised questions around methane classification. He said these points “signal the need for the Greens to understand that we want to bring farmers, their representatives and industry together, not kicking and screaming but united with clearly achievable goals”.
Speaking at a Sail Training Ireland event in Dublin, Government Chief Whip and Minister for Sport Jack Chambers said more time was needed to agree on an exit from the agricultural sector.
“It is everyone’s priority to see the matter through but obviously if it requires additional time and space and the negotiations cannot be concluded, we will have to take that,” he said. “We need a calm and engaged debate and that’s what Minister Ryan is doing with Minister McConaughey.”
Earlier on Wednesday, Taoiseach Michael Martin said it was “not easy to decide what level of climate emissions targets should be set for each sector”, after the three coalition leaders failed to reach an agreement on Tuesday night. .
On his way into the cabinet, the Taoiseach said the challenge for agriculture is to recognize the greater role it will play in the energy sector in the future, and “to provide food production systems with the challenge of climate change.” to reconcile the importance of. Undoubtedly exists”.
“So the government would obviously like to see agreement on this but there are challenges, it’s not easy, but we are committed to solving it and suffice it to say that all sectors of society and all sectors of our economy including Let agriculture contribute that. And then, once we set the targets, the focus will have to switch to delivery.
“It’s one thing to set goals, which is a little easier than achieving them over the next few years.
“What we’re trying to do here is avoid the worst consequences of climate change. We’re not going to avoid climate change anymore, we can see that with heat waves during the summer, but we We can limit these consequences by doing what we can for future generations and our children’s children.
“The difficulty in reaching an agreement shows the importance of the challenges. I think it’s important that we get a resolution, but that we do it in a way that addresses the road and climate change. Ease of delivering real speed.