The Programme for Government 2011 – 2016 states that a Climate Change Bill will be published, which will provide certainty surrounding government policy and provide a clear pathway for emissions reductions, in line with negotiated EU 2020 targets.
The Minister for the Environment, Phil Hogan has begun to act on this commitment by setting out a detailed timetable for the development of a national climate change policy and legislation. As part of this timetable, on 29 February last, the Minister launched a public consultation process, calling for “serious and constructive engagement across all sectors and stakeholders”. The public consultation, which runs until 30 April 2012 runs parallel with an independent policy analysis by the National Economic and Social Council (NESC).
Following conclusion of the NESC review and the public consultation process, it is envisaged that the Minister will issue heads of a climate Bill in the last quarter of 2012.