Department ‘progressing climate action and biodiversity policies’

The Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht has had significant input into the Climate Action Plan which was published recently by the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and the Environment.

This is according to the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan, who was responding to questions put to her – in respect of the matter – by Deputy Timmy Dooley, Fianna Fáil spokesperson on the environment, during Dáil proceedings last month.

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Dooley asked the minister about her attendance at weekly meetings – so far this year – in relation to climate change and the preparations made – within her department – to enact a climate plan.

Minister Madigan also pointed out that she hosted the first National Biodiversity Conference and was currently promoting the ’40 Seeds for Nature’.

Many of these seeds have a significant climate action impact and I am regularly briefed on the progress of this initiative.

She continued: “I am briefed on a regular basis by senior officials in relation to climate action initiatives in my department and on biodiversity initiatives with a climate action impact.

“I have published for consultation two draft climate adaptation plans – one on built heritage, and one on natural heritage – and I intend to complete these plans on time for final publication by the end of September 2019.”

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Minister Madigan went on to say that the secretary general of her department is a member of the Climate Action Delivery Board which comprises secretary generals from departments responsible for the delivery of actions outlined in the Climate Action Plan.

The Action Delivery Board will ensure an effective whole-of-Government delivery of the plan and will report on progress in implementing the plan on a quarterly basis to the cabinet committee and the Government.

She added: “In summary, and given the important links between climate action, biodiversity and nature conservation, both myself and the secretary general are in regular contact with relevant officials.

“My department is progressing climate action and biodiversity policies as a core component of its remit in the heritage area in particular.”