31 January 2019
By Mary Bermingham
The Green Party in Cork has welcomed news that the High Court has quashed a license for oil and gas exploration off the Cork coast.
On Wednesday, the High Court agreed to quash the license granted to a subsidiary of Providence Resources for exploration at Barryroe, south of the Old Head of Kinsale. The license was granted in October 2018 and was challenged by An Taisce over issues to do with the environmental assessment carried out for the project.
The party in Cork had previously argued against drilling by Providence in Ballyroe, saying there would be little local benefit from the project and that Ireland needs to set a course away from fossil fuels.
Speaking today, the party’s candidate in the Cork City South West ward, Colette Finn, said the High Court decision was “great news”:
“For the sake of ourselves, our children and grandchildren we need to act rationally and responsibly. Thankfully groups like An Taisce understand the science and act accordingly. The scientific evidence is that we need to leave fossil fuels in the ground. We need to develop alternative carbon neutral forms of energy which are sustainable. Climate change is real and is being caused by the carbon that we are burning in order to fuel our energy needs.”
“The Fine Gael-led Government talks out of both sides of its mouth on this issue. It claims to be tackling climate change and our contribution to it. However, it grants a license for further oil and gas exploration when we know we must reduce our dependence on fossil fuels for energy.”
The party says the Climate Emergency Measures Bill, which seeks to ban all drilling for oil and gas in Ireland, is currently in a parliamentary ‘limbo’ with its passage through the Oireachtas being blocked by the government.