Archive for the 'National Issues' Category



Get Ireland Growing: Cllr. Donnelly urges residents to take part in food campaign

29 March 2009

More home grown food is one recipe that can take Ireland forward

Cllr. Dominick Donnelly, Green Party member of Passage West Town Council and candidate for the Carrigaline area of Cork County Council has urged residents to take part in Get Ireland Growing, a campaign to encourage food growing at home and in the community. Cllr. Donnelly is calling on anyone interested in learning more about food growing or setting up a community garden or allotment scheme to contact him.

Cllr Donnelly said: “Over the last number of years Irish people have got increasingly interested in good food, cooking, and in living green lifestyles and there is huge interest in people wanting to grow their own food. If you have your own garden it’s easy to start growing, but if not, you may be interested in getting involved in a community garden or allotment scheme.

“Get Ireland Growing aims to get as many people as possible to start growing food and vegetables in allotments, community gardens, window boxes and their own back gardens. Growing your own food saves money, gets people out and about, can improve public health and cuts carbon emissions and food miles. It could also help enhance the community spirit.

Cllr. Donnelly said if residents in the community were interested in setting up an allotment or community garden in they should contact him to discuss setting up a local group. “I would also be interested in speaking to landowners or who may have suitable land for the scheme,” he said.

More information about the Green Party’s campaign can be found at www.getgrowing.ie.

Ban Noisy Car Exhausts via NCT Test, says Cllr. Donnelly

27th March 09

Green Party calls for ban on noisy cars with modified exhausts.

Cllr. Dominick Donnelly, the Green Party member of Passage West Town Council and candidate for the Carrigaline electoral area of Cork County Council, has welcomed proposals by the Road Safety Authority to tackle noise pollution from cars with modified exhausts.

Cllr. Donnelly said: “I’ve have been contacted by many residents suffering sleepless nights because of boy racers in noisy cars on residential roads in the early hours of the morning. Residents have to endure the loud grating sound of roaring exhausts while the dangerous drivers make donut rings on the roads.”

Fitting modified exhausts and silencer equipment is now illegal and the new NCT test is proposed to check car exhaust noise levels in order to ensure acceptable noise levels are not exceeded.

Under proposals released by the Road Safety Authority, a suggestion has been put forward to check car exhaust noise levels during the NCT. The RSA states: The nuisance caused by excessive noise from vehicle exhausts is regularly the subject of complaints received by the RSA. A new test is proposed at NCT whereby sound levels will be checked in order to ensure acceptable sound levels are not exceeded.

Green Party motion aims to stop TDs and senators getting double salaries

9th March 2009

At its annual convention over the weekend, the Green Party / Comhaontas Glas passed a motion calling on its parliamentary party to instigate legislation which will stop members of the Oireachtas who were previously public servants from effectively drawing two salaries.  Under the current situation members of the Oireachtas who were public servants, mostly teachers, can take an indefinite leave of absence from their position, and still draw their full salary with all increments and pensions entitlements, and from this salary they must pay for a substitute, who is invariably on a much lower point on the salary scale, with the Oireachtas member pocketing the difference.

The motion, which was put forward by the Cork South Central Greens, was proposed by the Green Party candidate for the South Central ward of Cork City Council, Mary Ryder.  Commenting on the motion, Ms. Ryder said:  “This motion is about removing double standards, which politicians have voted for themselves.  These double standards anger the public, and cost the taxpayer money.  There is simply no justification for this.  Members of all parties except the Green Party have availed of this, some for more than twenty years, purely to line their own pockets to the tune of maybe an extra €20,000 – €30,000 per annum on top of their Oireachtas salary.  This has to stop and it has to stop now.”

At the convention the motion was also supported by Cllr. Dominick Donnelly, the Green Party candidate for the Carrigaline electoral area of Cork County Council and Passage West Town Council.  Cllr. Donnelly commented:  “This is the sort of thing which leads the public to regard politicians as only being in politics for what they can get out of it.  It devalues politics, and undermines the public’s trust in those who are meant to be running the country.  The only Green Party member of the Oireachtas who could have availed of this perk, Minister Trevor Sargent, has never done so.  On election to the Dáil, Trevor Sargent immediately resigned his post as a national school principal.  However members from all other parties have shown a complete lack of morals by taking an unlimited leave of absence from their positions, and continuing to draw their salaries while also drawing their Oireachtas salaries.  This is an abomination.”

 

Full text of motion:

This convention

  • notes that a number of elected representatives have taken temporary leave from public and civil service posts, including teaching.
  • proposes that, on election to the Seanad, Dáil or European Parliament, such a career break be granted on the same basis as to all other teachers and other civil and public servants who take a career break: they have five years in which to either return to their jobs or retire, they do not receive a career salary or part thereof during their absence, they do not advance again on the incremental salary scale until and unless they resume their career.
  • mandates its parliamentarians to initiate the legislative change necessary to implement this policy within the lifetime of  this Dáil.

Green Party motion aims to make incinerators non-viable

9th March 2009

At its annual convention over the weekend, the Green Party / Comhaontas Glas passed a motion, calling on the Minister for the Environment, John Gormley, to sign a ministerial order to reinstate the proximity principle for waste management.  The reinstatement of the proximity principle would mean that waste for disposal, incineration or landfill, would not be able to be transferred between any of Ireland’s eight waste regions.  In other words all waste for disposal would have to be dealt with within each region.  The proximity principle was removed a number of years ago by a ministerial order signed by Dick Roche during his time as Minister for the Environment.

The motion, which was put forward by the Cork East Greens, was proposed by the Green Party candidate for the Midleton electoral area of Cork County Council and Midleton Town Council, Malachy Harty.  Commenting on the motion, Mr. Harty said:  “This motion is very important in that it helps to make the proposed incinerators in Ringaskiddy non-viable as they would only be able to take waste from the Cork waste region, and not bring it in from anywhere else in the country.  I am delighted that the members of the Green Party supported this motion at the annual convention by more than a two thirds majority.  This mandates our party leader, the Minister for the Environment John Gormley, to put the ministerial order in place.”

At the convention the motion was also supported by Cllr. Dominick Donnelly, the Green Party candidate for the Carrigaline electoral area of Cork County Council and Passage West Town Council.  Cllr. Donnelly commented:  “I am confident that our party leader will act on this motion very shortly, and this will put a further nail in the coffin for Indaver’s plans to build two incinerators in Ringaskiddy, which are currently before An Bord Pleanála.  For those of us who have been fighting Indaver for the past eight years on this issue, this is great news, and gives us hope that there is light at the end of the tunnel.”

 

Full text of motion:

East Cork Greens propose that the Minister for the Environment should reinstate the proximity principal for residual waste disposal. The proximity principal will require that waste being burned at an incinerator must be sourced within the same county or region that it’s created in. This would dramatically reduce the viability of incineration as a waste disposal method.

East Cork has a rich tourism and agricultural tradition. The area continues to shine in both sectors and has wonderful potential for creating increased value and employment into the future. The area is becoming recognised for its store of good food and culinary mastery. A prominent incinerator on the harbour shores will be detrimental to these sectors.

With good reason, there is a strong fear in Cobh, Midleton and East Cork generally that the proposed incinerator at Ringaskiddy will present a high risk of pollution. These towns lie directly downwind of the proposed incinerator site so that public health, agriculture and tourism will be subject to emissions in the long term. There are also risks from accidents, which happen more frequently that we are asked to believe.

East Cork Greens propose that the Minister for the Environment should reinstate the proximity principal for residual waste disposal. This would apply to waste for landfill or incineration. It would not apply to recyclable or compostable streams. This is something that the Minister for the Environment can do which will make any large scale incinerator in the country unviable, or certainly dramatically reduce its viability. The proximity principal will require that waste being burned at an incinerator must be sourced within the same county or waste region.

The Green Party should promote waste minimisation, recycling and composting, locally. These are growth industries and are ‘Towards a Green New Deal’. Incineration is not.


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