Category: Natural Resources


People Before Profit to campaign against Infrastrata exploratory drill near Woodburn Reservoir in Co. Antrim

MLA and TD hit out at ‘cloak and dagger’ tactic by authorities in allowing this drill to take place; implications for South

People Before Profit to move Bill to ban fracking in the Dáil once it resumes

Cllr Gerry Carroll, People Before Profit, Belfast City Council

Gerry Carroll MLA, People Before Profit, West Belfast

People Before Profit MLA, Gerry Carroll and TD, Richard Boyd Barrett condemn moves to initiate fracking in Co Antrim and warned if test drills go ahead it could open the door for fracking North and South. The statement comes after NI Water’s decision to allow Infrastrata to begin drilling for oil just 380 metres away from Woodburn reservoir in Co Antrim. This could lead to UK company, Tramboran, attempting to drill in Fermanagh, which in turn, could lead to fracking in Leitrim and Cavan.

Gerry Carroll said: “We are concerned that streets in West Belfast and across Belfast could be impacted by this drill. The decision by NI water to allow drilling to take place just 380 metres from the reservoir is a scandal, with no thought whatsoever given to the potential impact on the region’s water supply. This could affect tens of thousands of homes across Antrim. A leak near the Carrickfergus reservoir would have a disastrous effect for the people living in the surrounding area.

“NI water is the regulating body tasked with providing clean, hygienic drinking water for people in the North. Yet they have given the go ahead for a major US oil company to begin drilling right next to one of our major reservoirs.”

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Government promises on Climate Change and reducing fossil fuel nothing but “hot air” if they refuse to ban fracking

fracking billRichard Boyd Barrett TD for the People Before Profit Alliance today presented a bill to the Dáil calling for a complete ban on Hydraulic Fracturing (Fracking) in Ireland.

The bill has been drafted by Kate Ruddock, Friends of the Earth and Attracta Uí Bhroin, Vice-President An Taisce.

At a press conference today in Buswell’s Hotel, Deputy Boyd Barrett joined with environmental groups and anti-fracking campaigners to outline the details of the Prohibition of Hydraulic Fracturing Bill 2015.

Speakers at the press conference joining Deputy Boyd Barrett included: Kate Ruddock, Friends of the Earth, Scott Croombs from Love Leitrim (anti-fracking campaign) and Attracta Uí Bhroin, Vice Chair An Taisce

Deputy Boyd Barrett and other speakers at the press conference said government promises to help tackle climate change, reduce CO2 emissions and move to a more sustainable energy policy, following the Paris Climate summit, could not be taken seriously unless they were matched with actions such as a complete ban on fracking.

Deputy Boyd Barrett introduced the bill in the Dáil after the Order of Business.

Richard Boyd Barrett said: “Government announcements this week, in the aftermath of the Paris Climate summit, that they are serious about tackling climate change and reducing fossil fuel use, are nothing more than “hot air,” if they don’t immediately ban fracking. How can Minister White’s statement’s yesterday that the government are determined to reduce Ireland’s CO2 emissions, be taken in anyway seriously, if at the same time they allow efforts to commence fracking in this country to progress. If we are serious about tackling run-away climate change we must ban fracking and leave this shale gas in the ground.

It is also deeply disturbing that at the Joint Oireachtas Committee last week, the EPA admitted in response to questions I asked them, that the report they are currently undertaking into fracking would not when it is completed be able to tell us whether fracking represented a danger to human health.  New York has just banned fracking on health grounds. How could fracking be unsafe for human health in New York and safe in Ireland? The truth is, the EPA report into fracking is a sham exercise, hopelessly corrupted by the central involvement of pro-fracking companies such as DKM Smith and AMEC, who are bought and paid for by the big gas and oil companies.”     Continue reading

poster conferenceTonight is the first event of the People Before Profit ‘A Radical Alternative Vision of Ireland’ policy programme. This event is an opportunity for people to contribute their ideas for an alternative Ireland.

The event will take place in the Teachers Club, 36 Parnell Sq. West, Dublin 1. The event will run on Friday 18th, Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th September.

 

Tonight’s event is the launch of Mike Gonzalez‘s book ‘The Politics of Water’ starting at 8pm. This will provide a great insight to the issue of water across the world and the opposition to privatisation of water which provides a context for the anti-water charges movement in Ireland.

 

Mike Gonzalez is an author and Professor of Latin American Studies in the University of Glasgow

There are a number of plenary sessions throughout the weekend which include speakers like People Before Profit TD Richard Boy Barrett, Independent TD Clare Daly, Anti- Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy, People Before Profit councilors Gerry Carroll, Bríd Smith and John Lyons and author Kevin Ovenden.

 

There are also a number of workshop events throughout the weekend which include topics such as housing, disability, youth forum, TTIP and Tax Havens, Northern Ireland, poverty, low pay, the arts, and racism and immigration in Ireland to name but a few.

 

The event will close with a final plenary session titled ‘Building a New Left’ including speakers Richard Boyd Barrett TD, Anti-Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy, Ailbhe Smyth and Cllr Gerry Carroll.

Plenary sessions:

Saturday 19th
11.30am- 1.00pm- Plenary: Pro-Choice- Why we are fighting for a woman’s right to choose.
Speakers:
Ailbhe Smyth- Chair Repeal the 8th Amendment Campaign, Convener of People Before Profit,  feminist and LGBT activist, and former UCD academic.
Clare Daly TD- Independent TD for for Dublin North and Repeal the 8th Amendment campaigner.

Fiona NicFhearghais- People Before Profit Belfast representative and SWP organiser for West Belfast

2.00-3.30- Plenary: Greece, Spain, Ireland- Debt austerity and resistance
Speakers:
Kieran Allen- Author and lecturer in UCD

Kevin Ovenden- Author of a book on Greece and Syriza, Escaping the Labyrinth.

 

5.30-7.00- Plenary: An alternative economic agenda- for people not profit.
Speakers:
Brian O’Boyle- Lecturer in Economics, St. Angela’s College, Sligo
Tom O’Connor- Lecturer in Economics and Social Policy, Cork Institute of Technology
Professor Terry McDonagh- Professor of Economics, National University of Ireland, Galway

Goretti Horgan- Lecturer in Social Policy in the University of Ulster, member of the Board of Directors of the Northern Ireland Anti-Poverty Network

Sunday 20th
12.00-1.30- Plenary: The battle against water charges- where now?

Speakers:

  • Cllr John Lyons- People Before Profit Councillor for Beaumont-Donaghmede and general election candidate for Dublin Bay North
  • Cllr Bríd Smith- People Before Profit Councillor for Ballyfermot/Drimnagh, general election candidate for Dublin South Central, member of the Right2Water steering group.

3.00-5.00- Plenary: Building a New Left
Speakers:

  • Ailbhe Smyth
  • Richard Boyd Barrett TD- People Before Profit TD for Dun Laoghaire, part of the Right2Water campaign
  • Paul Murphy TD- Anti-Austerity Alliance TD for Dublin South-West, part of Right2Water campaign
  • Cllr Gerry Carroll- People Before Profit Councillor for West Belfast

Link to full event programme:

http://www.peoplebeforeprofit.ie/2015/09/a-radical-alternative-vision-for-ireland/

Boyd Barrett speaks on Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Bill

 

Video of massive anti-water charges protest in Dun Laoghaire on November 1st.

Footage courtesy of Dave Kennedy (Many thanks)

dun laoghaire r2w

Melisa_Halpin (2)In a statement this evening Cllr Melisa Halpin, People Before Profit, confirmed that Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Concil have called on the new Cheif Executive to pull out of the Poolbeg incinerator project. 

A discussion at council meeting this evening on the future of the project resulted in a motion to this effect, proposed by Cllr Melisa Halpin, being passed.  

The plan to put a 550,000 tonne per annum incinerator at Poolbeg was first conceived in 1996 and has been held up by EU court cases over the years.  The whole project has been extremely controversial on scientific, health, environmental and cost grounds. To date the four Dublin local Authorities have spent €90million, all in pre construction costs.

Tonight and tomorrow, the four local authorities will be voting to give the chief executives the green light to proceed spending money on this ill conceived project.

If the project goes ahead all four authorities will be roped into developing the waste market in order to provide the 550,000 tonnes each year that the incinerator will need to remain profitable.

Cllr Melisa Halpin: “The plan to put an incinerator at Poolbeg was a disaster from the very start for so many reasons, not least of which is the very serious environmental problems with incineration.  On top of this, the site is utterly inappropriate, to feed a machine this size will mean that hundreds and hundreds of trucks will be trundling through Ringsend on a daily basis.  The adverse effects on the health and safety of the people of Ringsend and Sandymount cannot be overstated.

“Furthermore the economics of it are not only unsound they border on the completely insane.  The councils have already spent €90 million between them on this project, if it goes ahead all councils will be tied into a plan to create waste to feed this Poolbeg Beast and will be effectively writing a blank cheque for the next 15 years.  At a time when people in the country are clamouring to recycle and reuse we should be investing money in this area not in ensuring that more waste is created so that the incinerator can become viable.”

“This is an utterly unsustainable plan that is bad for the public purse, bad for the environment and bad for the health and safety of the people of Dublin.  We need to call a halt now.  The plan was a mistake in 1996 and there is no point in compounding it to save the conscience or the careers of the politicians and civil servants involved.”

 

poolbegIn a statement this evening People Before Profit councillors in all four local authorities announced they would be voting against the proposal to proceed with the Poolbeg Incinerator. 

The plan to put a 550,00 tonne per annum incinerator at Poolbeg was first conceived in 1996 and has been held up by EU court cases over the years.  The whole project has been extremely controversial on scientific, health, environmental and cost grounds. To date the four Dublin local Authorities have spent €90million, all in pre construction costs.

Tonight and tomorrow, the four local authorities will be voting to give the chief executives the green light to proceed spending money on this ill conceived project.

If the project goes ahead all four authorities will be roped into developing the waste market in order to provide the 550,000 tonnes each year that the incinerator will need to remain profitable.

Melisa_Halpin (2)Cllr Melisa Halpin: “The plan to put an incinerator at Poolbeg was a disaster from the very start for so many reasons, not least of which is the very serious environmental problems with incineration.  On top of this, the site is utterly inappropriate, to feed a machine this size will mean that hundreds and hundreds of trucks will be trundling through Ringsend on a daily basis.  The adverse effects on the health and safety of the people of Ringsend and Sandymount are off the richter scale.

“Furthermore the economics of it are not only unsound they border on the completely insane.  The councils have already spent €90 million between them on this project, if it goes ahead all councils will be tied into a plan to create waste to feed this Poolbeg Beast.  At a time when people in the country are clamouring to recycle and reuse we should be investing money in this area not in ensuring that more waste is created so that the incinerator can become viable.”

“This is an utterly unsustainable plan that is bad for the public purse, bad for the environment and bad for the health and safety of the people of Dublin.  We need to call a halt now.  The plan was a mistake in 1996 and there is no point in compounding it to save the conscience or the careers of the politicians and civil servants involved.”