The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed has today, Tuesday, October 5, outlined: “The increase in the price of diesel as a consequence of the carbon tax will not – in fact – impact on agri diesel.”

Speaking on RTE’s ‘Budget 2020’ coverage, Minister Creed added: “We have provision from the hypothecated fund from the carbon tax of €90 million.

We have some of that [ringfenced] for new schemes and I’m looking in particular at a pilot in the area of less-intensive management of carbon rich soils in particular under an environmental efficiency scheme.

He noted: “The view is to mainstream pilots like that in the next CAP.”

Cross-party support for carbon tax rise

Meanwhile, earlier today, In announcing Budget 2020, the Minister for Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohue, outlined: “There is nearly cross-party support to increase the price of carbon from €20 to €80/t by 2030.”

However, Minister Donohue noted that this will be done incrementally and said the Government is committed to “a €6/t increase as a first step towards this target”.

The move will see the carbon tax increase from €20/t to €26/t.

This increase will apply from midnight tonight to auto fuels but its application to other fuels will be delayed until May 2020, after the winter heating season.

The minister said: “This measure will raise €90 million all of which will be ring-fenced to fund new climate action measures.”

He noted that the Government plans to: “Provide additional relief through the Diesel Rebate Scheme to hauliers to compensate the sector for the increased cost of fuel.”

In announcing the increase, the minister outlined: “Climate change is without doubt our defining challenge.

“We need to prove that we can grow the economy while reducing our carbon footprint,” he concluded.