AT the June meeting of Clare County Council a motion was passed, asking the Government to seek a global ban on fracking at the United Nation’s General Assembly.
The motion was put forward by Fianna Fáil’s Pat Hayes, Cillian Murphy and Tony O’Brien, and passed unanimously.
Introducing the motion, Councillor Hayes said that Clare County Council has taken a strong stand against fracking in the past.
“This motion is something that we’ve continuously talked about at Clare County Council over the years. We were the first Council in the country to propose a ban on fracturing gas and that led to a full national ban.
“Here we’re looking to go further, looking for the Government to put a proposal in front of the UN to ban the fracturing of gas all over the world.”
He said a number of Clare organisations are in favour of the motion and added, “I hope that this Council can be to the fore again in terms of environmental challenges and issues that are affecting the whole environment of the world rather than our own county and country.
“It’s important, while we debate a lot of issues here today, the most important thing we could talk about any day is our environmental concerns whether they be local, national or world.”
Speaking on the motion, Councillor Murphy said, “In 2017 Ireland became the fourth EU member to ban onshore fracking. In 2018 Ireland became the first country to fully divest public money from fossil fuels.
“In the 2020 programme for Government Ireland became the first country in the world to state that it did not support the importation of fracked gas and it would develop a policy statement to that effect.
“And as my colleague Councillor Hayes said, long, long before that, in 2012 this Council became the first local authority in Ireland to ban fracking through its development plan.
“The longer fracking operations take place the greater the body of evidence that these activities are dangerous and have detrimental impacts on water, air, climate stability, public health, farming and human rights.”
Owen Ryan has been a journalist with the Clare Champion since 2007, having previously worked for a number of other regional titles in Limerick, Galway and Cork.