Motion: 04. That the Party recognises and will react to the urgency of the threats presented by Climate Change
Motion Title That the Party recognises and will react to the urgency of the threats presented by Climate Change
Branch Dublin North West & Kildare South
Address To National Council/Policy Committee

That the Policy Committee is mandated to review and further develop the Draft Policy on Climate Change to reflect the ideas presented above and the urgency of action in terms of demanding accountability at a personal and political level.
We recommend that these policies are developed in conjunction with major civic voluntary groups and the EPA so we can quickly refine and deepen our policy.

Specific Actions are:

1. That National Council Policy Committee will create a committee in conjunction with major civic groups and the EPA to review and update our climate change policy.
2. In order to align with action on a European Level, the committee should be guided by the “Report of the Independent Commission for Sustainable Equality | 2019-2024”, (Group of the Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament) and in particular Chapter 6.
3. This committee will have a particular focus on developing effective policy for the party to deal with climate change emergency recently declared by the Dail.
4. The committee shall prepare a report including a policy document to be voted on at the next national conference for adoption and implementation

Amendments to Motion

Ireland ranked worst in EU for performance on climate action (Irish Times 10/12/18).

Our children are calling for leadership (Irish Times 16/3/19)
Our time is now, we need to shift from an ”ego -system economy” to an “eco-system economy”, we have entered an age of disruption. Financial collapse, climate change, resource depletion and a growing gap between rich and poor are but a few of the signs that the existing system based solely on market forces is not working.
Meeting the challenges of 21st century Ireland requires updating our economic logic and operating system from an obsolete “ego-system” focused entirely on the well-being of oneself to an eco-system awareness that emphasises the well- being of the whole.
We face eight structural disconnects that are visible symptoms of problems in our underlying structure of how we organise society.


Addressing the root cause of these structural disconnects is like touching eight acupuncture points of economic and social transformation. If addressed as a set, acupuncture points hold the possibility for evolving our institutions in ways that bridge the three major divides of our time.

1) The Ecological Divide
2)The Social Divide
3)The Spiritual -Culture Divide

If we analyse these disconnects, we see the following issues:
1. The ecological divide. We consume resources at 1.5 times the regeneration capacity of Planet Earth because of a mismatch between the unlimited growth imperative and the finite resources of the planet. As a consequence, we have hit the limit to growth in the market model, we need better ways to preserve increasingly scarce resources.
2. The income and wealth disconnect. The top 1 per cent of the Irish population own more than the bottom 90 per cent resulting in wealth concentration in one part of society and unmet basic needs in another. As a consequence, we are reaching dangerous levels of inequality. This calls for a better realisation of basic human rights through a rebalancing of the economic playing field.
3. The financial disconnect. Foreign exchange transactions of $ 1.5 quadrillion ($1,500 trillion) dwarf international trade of $ 20 trillion. (less than 1.4 percent of all foreign exchange transactions) The disconnect is manifest in the decoupling of the financial economy from the real economy. As a consequence, we are increasingly hitting the limits of speculation.
4. The technology disconnects. We respond to societal issues with quick technical fixes that address symptoms rather than with systemic solutions. As a consequence, we are hitting the limits to symptoms- focused fixes. i.e. limits to solutions that respond to problems with more technological gadgets rather than by addressing the problems root causes.
5. The leadership disconnect. We collectively create results that nobody wants because decision- makers are increasingly disconnected from the people affected by their decisions, as a consequence, we are hitting the limits to leadership, i.e. the limits to traditional top-down leadership that works the mechanisms of institutional silos.
6. The consumerism disconnect. Greater material consumption does not lead to increased health and well-being. As a consequence, we are increasingly hitting the limits to consumerism, a problem that calls for reconnecting the economic process with the deep sources of happiness and well-being.
7. The governance disconnect. As a community, we are unable to address the most pressing problems of our time, because our coordination mechanisms are decoupled from the crisis of working people. Markets are good for private goods, but are unable to fix the common crisis of capitalism. As a consequence, we are increasingly hitting the limits to competition. We need to redraw the boundary between cooperation and competition by introducing, e.g., premarket areas of collaboration that enable innovation at the scale of the whole system.

8. The ownership disconnect. We face massive overuse of scare resources, manifested in the decoupling of current ownership forms from the best societal use of scarce assets, such as our ecological base. As a consequence, we are increasely hitting the limits to traditional property rights. This calls for a possible third category of commons – based property rights that would better protect the interest of future generations and the planet.
We acknowledge the work that the party has done since its foundation to develop climate policy. We also acknowledge that the pace of change and the seriousness of the crisis demands a review of the party policy. We need to demonstrate we are serious about climate change, and avoid the “Greenwashing” of our policies.
We would suggest aligning the above objectives to the Sustainable Equality document produced by the parliamentary group of the progressive alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament.