This section details the international, European and national obligations and commitments, upon which the Climate Change Action Plans have been based.
At the Paris Climate Conference (COP21) in December 2015, 195 countries adopted the first-ever universal, legally-binding global climate deal. The agreement sets out a global action plan to put the world on track to avoid dangerous climate change by limiting global warming to well below 2°C.
EU & Ireland’s Targets
The EU has recognised the risks of climate change and subsequently, Ireland has been set national targets under various EU directives that have been transposed as statutory instruments. These require that certain targets for energy efficiency, renewable energy and GHG reductions are achieved by 2020, namely:
- A 20% reduction in non-emissions trading scheme (ETS) greenhouse
gas emissions relative to 2005 levels
- Raising the share of EU energy consumption produced by renewable
resources to 20% (adjusted to 16% for Ireland)
- A 20% improvement in the EU’s energy efficiency
New targets for emission reduction have been set for 2030, which remain around 20% for Ireland and a target of a climate-neutral Europe (including Ireland) has been set by 2050
Public Sector Targets
In line with the National Energy Efficiency Action Plan (NEEAP), the local authorities in Ireland are committed to achieving a 33% improvement in energy efficiency for their own operations by 2020.
Furthermore, the Dublin Local Authorities are all signatories to the EU Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy initiative, which is a voluntary commitment by members to develop and implement Sustainable Energy and Climate Change Action Plans and reduce their regions’ greenhouse gases (GHGs) by 40% by 2030.