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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 392-414
 Header Item Septic Tank Registration Scheme
 Header Item Scenic Walks
 Header Item Water and Sewerage Schemes Status
 Header Item Housing Statistics
 Header Item Departmental Agencies Issues
 Header Item Waste Management Regulations
 Header Item Local Authority Housing Mortgages
 Header Item Planning Issues
 Header Item Unfinished Housing Developments
 Header Item Anti-Social Behaviour
 Header Item NAMA Social Housing Provision
 Header Item Mortgage to Rent Scheme Funding
 Header Item Household Charge Collection
 Header Item Climate Change Policy

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 785 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 89 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 392-414

Septic Tank Registration Scheme

 392. Deputy Jack Wall Information on Jack Wall Zoom on Jack Wall asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan his view on a submission (details supplied) regarding septic tanks; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54266/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The Water Services (Amendment) Act 2012 provides for the introduction of a registration and inspection system for domestic wastewater treatment systems. The Water Services Acts 2007 and 2012 (Domestic Waste Water Treatment Systems) Regulations 2012 set out the performance standards that treatment systems must comply with. The basic standard to be met by all domestic wastewater treatment systems is that they do not cause a risk to human health or the environment.

Inspections , which are to be carried out by the local authorities, will not commence until mid-2013 and will be objective and evidence-based. Householders can be assured that if their systems are working properly and are being maintained, they need not be concerned. There will be a proportionate and risk-based approach to inspections, which will be targeted towards areas where drinking water sources or habitats are at risk from septic tank discharges. My Department is currently examining the possibility of introducing a grants scheme as part of the inspection system. However, any grants scheme introduced will have regard to the overall budgetary situation and the financial position of the individual households concerned.

Scenic Walks

 393. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if a walk being developed in South Kerry called the Bolus Head in Ballinskelligs County Kerry could be combined as an extension or offshoot of the Kerry Way; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [54268/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The looped walk under development at Bolus Head has a road link with the Kerry Way from Allagheemore to Cloghanecanuig, which includes a short section of the R566. This link provides for the Bolus Head looped walk to join up with the Kerry Way. It is not intended to develop an off road extension or further link to the Kerry Way.

Water and Sewerage Schemes Status

 394. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will list, for each county, the villages/towns with a public foul sewer network discharging to a public effluent treatment plant; and the level of treatment, whether primary, secondary or tertiary treatment. [54272/12]

 395. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will list, for each county, the public sewer networks discharging directly to rivers, lakes of sea outfall. [54273/12]

 396. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will list for each county, the villages/towns without a public foul sewer network. [54274/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan I propose to take Questions Nos. 394 to 396, inclusive, together.

  My Department does not compile the information requested relating to public sewer networks. The EPA, however, reports on the quality of effluents discharged from treatment plants, sewers or drainage pipes that are controlled or used by local authorities. The EPA latest report Focus on Urban Waste Water Discharges in Ireland for the monitoring period 2008/2009 was published in February 2012. This national report summarises effluent discharge quality from agglomerations in excess of 500 p.e., and also outlines the type of receiving waters into which wastewater is discharged. A copy of the report is available on the EPA website at www.epa.ie . A further update summary for the monitoring period 2010 was published in June 2012.

Housing Statistics

 397. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the number of timber framed housing units that have been completed here since 1992. [54275/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan My Department collates and publishes a wide range of housing statistics that inform the preparation and evaluation of policy and these data are available on my Department's website www.environ.ie . While my Department collates data on the completion of different housing types - single house, scheme house and apartment - we do not gather data on the construction method used.

Departmental Agencies Issues

 398. Deputy Joe Higgins Information on Joe Higgins Zoom on Joe Higgins asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan when he intends removing the legal immunity enjoyed by the Environmental Protection Agency as per the recommendations in the last EPA review published 18 months ago. [54291/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Review Implementation Plan was published on 31 January 2012 and is available on my Department's website www.environ.ie . Implementation of the recommendations is underway. The plan contains a list of actions arising from the review, some of which are a matter for my Department and others which are the responsibility of the EPA and others. I prioritised a large number of actions for implementation in 2012, while others will be considered over a longer period as they will require detailed consultation and possibly primary legislation. Details of the expected timeframes for the implementation of individual recommendations are set out in the implementation plan. The review recommended that the statutory immunity from prosecution, as applicable to the EPA in carrying out its functions, should be reconsidered.  As set out in the implementation plan, I propose to consider this issue, which would require primary legislation if it is decided to progress it, in the latter half of 2013.

Waste Management Regulations

 399. Deputy Derek Keating Information on Derek Keating Zoom on Derek Keating asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to problems with the standards of service being provided by private operators who have replaced local authorities in relation to refuse collection; his plans for licensing; the standards that will apply across the board in contracts offered to private operators; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53801/12]

 400. Deputy Derek Keating Information on Derek Keating Zoom on Derek Keating asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan his plans to regulate private operators who are now currently replacing the local authority refuse collection service here; if he has received many complaints in relation to a private operator company (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53803/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan I propose to take Questions Nos. 399 and 400 together.

  The operational implications of the transfer of waste collection services by City and County Councils to private operators are matters in the first instance for the local authorities concerned.  My Department’s role is to provide a comprehensive legislative and waste policy framework through which the enforcement authorities, such as the local authorities, operate.  In this regard, I published A Resource Opportunity - Waste Management Policy in Ireland in July, 2012. This policy sets out a range of measures which will significantly revise the current regulatory regime to ensure, inter alia, that waste collected is managed in accordance with the waste hierarchy; that mandated service levels are delivered; and that Customer Charters are put in place by all waste collection providers.  Customer Charters will be required to clearly set out information for customers in relation to issues such as charging structures, procedures for dealing with customers who may fall into arrears, and arrangements for switching from one waste collector to another. I have written to the waste management industry in relation to the development of such Customer Charters ahead of the development of the new regulatory regime.

  The work of developing new regulatory structures to give effect to these measures has commenced and my Department is engaging with a range of key stakeholders in relation to the detailed design of the new system. It is my intention that the improved regulatory regime will aid local authorities to deliver both enhanced environmental performance and to ensure a quality service for consumers.

Local Authority Housing Mortgages

 401. Deputy Seán Ó Fearghaíl Information on Seán Ó Fearghaíl Zoom on Seán Ó Fearghaíl asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the best practice guidelines his Department has issued to local authorities in relation to dealing with shared ownership cases experiencing significant arrears; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54302/12]

 413. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the extent to which he expects to be in a position to restructure the shared ownership loan scheme in such a way as to prevent the anomalies that have emerged in recent years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54552/12]

 414. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the extent to which he has evaluated arrears in respect of the shared ownership mortgages operated by the local authorities; the action he proposes to address issues emerging; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54553/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan I propose to take Questions Nos. 401, 413 and 414 together.

Local authorities have long been the lenders of last resort servicing the housing loans needs of less affluent members of society. In the present economic circumstances it is to be anticipated that the ability of some borrowers to service housing loans may become restricted and that a number of loans may fall into arrears. Section 34 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009 provides local authorities with powers to deal flexibly with distressed borrowers, and they have demonstrated sensitivity over the years in dealing with such cases. In March 2010 my Department issued guidelines to local authorities, based on the Central Bank’s first Code of Conduct on Mortgage Arrears, which continued the tradition of handling arrears in a manner that is sympathetic to the needs of the particular household, while also protecting the position of the local authority concerned.

To reflect the content of the Central Bank’s revised Code of Conduct – which replaced the previous code from 1 January 2011 and was informed by the deliberations of the Expert Group on Mortgage Arrears and Personal Debt – my Department issued updated guidance in July 2012 to local authorities in consultation with the County and City Managers Association. This will further enable local authorities to provide a range of flexible repayment options for households in difficulty. In particular, the introduction of a Mortgage Arrears Resolution Process (MARP), which closely mirrors the suite of options available in the commercial sector, will present borrowers in difficulty with a range of alternative payment agreements, which can be accessed to ease the particular circumstances of each case. This process will feature a standard set of options including, in cases of certain unsustainable mortgages, the facility of mortgage-to-rent. Local authorities have been restructuring loans for some time using their own internal practices. The introduction of these revised guidelines will standardise the approach across the whole sector, introduce a systematic structure to this area and provide borrowers with a transparent and accessible model for arrears resolution. I expect that the adoption of these revised guidelines will serve simultaneously to help resolve mortgage difficulties for both local authorities and their borrowers.

In relation to the Shared Ownership Scheme specifically, the rent charged on the local authority’s equity in a shared ownership transaction is to cover the funding costs to the Housing Finance Agency which are based on borrowings at the prevailing interest rates. Any difference between the rent and prevailing interest rate is reflected in the capital outstanding on the property, i.e. if the rent charged in any period is greater than the prevailing mortgage interest due on the local authority’s share the purchase price of the outstanding equity will be reduced accordingly. The Government's housing policy statement, published in June 2011, announced the standing down of all affordable housing schemes, including the shared ownership scheme, in the context of a full review of Part V of the Planning and Development Act 2000. That review is now underway. I will shortly publish material on my Department’s website, in furtherance of the review, and this will facilitate stakeholder consultation which is likely to take place early next year.

Planning Issues

 402. Deputy Luke 'Ming' Flanagan Information on Luke 'Ming' Flanagan Zoom on Luke 'Ming' Flanagan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the reason local authorities do not have to make the details of their own planning applications available online as it the case with other planning applications; if he will agree that they should be available for viewing on line and that quite often such applications are of great public interest as they often relate to public works, road realignments and so on; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54304/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan Section 179 of the Planning and Development Act 2000, and the associated Part 8 of the Planning and Development Regulations 2001, set out the legal requirements in relation to local authority own development which does not require environmental impact assessment. Where a planning authority proposes to carry out development in accordance with Part 8 the Manager of the planning authority must consult the public and prescribed authorities. In doing so, the planning authority must:

 - erect a site notice and publish a newspaper notice indicating the location, nature and extent of the development;

 - state in these notices that plans and particulars of the proposed development are available for inspection at the offices of the local authority for a specified period;-send notice of the proposed development to a list of prescribed bodies;

 - and invite the making of submissions or observations on the proposed development.

  In addition, proposals for developments to be carried out by local authorities are subject to review by the elected members. The members can decide, by resolution, to vary or modify the proposed development, other than as recommended by the Manager, or can decide not to proceed with the development. Local authorities are then required to give notice of their decision to any persons or bodies who made submissions or observations. These public consultation procedures also apply to proposed development under section 179(1)(d) of the 2000 Act where development is proposed to be carried out on behalf of, or in partnership with, the local authority in its own functional area, pursuant to a contract with the local authority, for example by way of public private partnership.

  Under section 175 of the Act, where development is proposed to be carried out on behalf of, or in partnership with a local authority in its own functional area and in respect of which the preparation of an environmental impact statement is required, or under section 177(AE), where a Natura impact statement is required for a similar development proposal, the same public consultation procedures must be carried out.

  Question No. 403 answered with Question No. 378.

Unfinished Housing Developments

 404. Deputy Seamus Kirk Information on Seamus Kirk Zoom on Seamus Kirk asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the names of unfinished housing estates in County Meath and the category in which each is classed; if he will list the estates that have not been taken in charge by the council; if Meath County Council is providing street-lighting maintenance and or other services in these estates; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54332/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan The 2012 National Housing Development survey, which includes details of unfinished housing developments on a county by county basis broken down by category, can be accessed on my Department's web site www.environ.ie . Queries regarding the taking in charge and provision of services in individual estates should be addressed directly to the relevant local authority.

Anti-Social Behaviour

 405. Deputy Barry Cowen Information on Barry Cowen Zoom on Barry Cowen asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if guidelines exist regarding anti-social behaviour in local authority housing; the number of evictions each respective county and city council has carried out as a result of anti-social behaviour; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54438/12]

 406. Deputy Barry Cowen Information on Barry Cowen Zoom on Barry Cowen asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the number of legal actions each respective city and county council have taken as a result of anti-social behaviour; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54439/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan I propose to take Questions Nos. 405 and 406 together.

  The Housing Acts 1966 to 2009 confer a range of powers on housing authorities relating to combating anti-social behaviour in their housing stock , including the making of an anti-social behaviour strategy under the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009. The exercise of these powers is a matter for the relevant authority.

  The following table contains statistics compiled by my Department showing warrants sought under section 62 of the Housing Act 1966 by local authorities in 2011 for anti-social behaviour reasons, along with the number of evictions carried out. It also contains details of excluding orders sought, granted and enforced in 2011 under section 3 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1997. My Department does not collect statistics on the number of other legal actions taken by local authorities in respect of anti-social behaviour.

Local Authorities





COUNTY COUNCILS
Section 62 Warrants Sought - Anti Social Behaviour
No. of Evictions carried out on foot of Section 62 Warrants - Anti Social Behaviour
Excluding Orders Sought
Excluding Orders Granted
Excluding Orders Enforced
Carlow
0
0
0
0
0
Cavan
1
0
0
0
0
Clare
1
0
0
0
0
Cork County
0
0
0
0
0
Cork South
0
0
0
0
0
Cork West
0
0
0
0
0
Donegal
0
0
0
0
0
Dun Laoghaire Rathdown
3
0
1
0
0
Fingal
0
0
0
0
0
Galway
3
0
0
0
0
Kerry
0
0
4
0
0
Kildare
0
0
0
0
0
Kilkenny
0
0
1
0
0
Laois
6
5
0
0
0
Leitrim
0
0
0
0
0
Limerick
0
0
4
3
3
Longford
3
0
0
0
0
Louth
0
0
0
0
0
Mayo
0
0
0
0
0
Meath
0
0
0
0
0
Monaghan
0
0
0
0
0
North Tipperary
1
0
0
0
0
Offaly
1
0
0
0
0
Roscommon
0
0
0
0
0
Sligo
0
0
0
0
0
South Dublin
12
0
5
5
5
South Tipperary
0
0
0
0
0
Waterford
0
0
0
0
0
Westmeath
2
2
2
2
2
Wexford
0
0
0
0
0
Wicklow
0
0
0
0
0
TOTAL County Councils
33
7
17
10
10
CITY COUNCILS          
Cork
0
0
0
0
0
Dublin
3
1
7
6
2
Galway
3
0
3
1
1
Limerick
10
6
1
1
1
Waterford
1
0
0
0
2
TOTAL City Councils
17
7
11
8
6


The following table provides the statistics for town councils.
TOWN COUNCILS          
Athlone
1
0
0
0
0
Ballinasloe
0
0
1
1
1
Bray
3
0
0
0
0
Cashel
1
0
0
0
0
New Ross
0
0
2
2
2
Sligo
0
0
1
1
1
Thurles
1
1
0
0
0
TOTAL Town Councils
6
1
4
4
4
TOTALS City, County and Town Councils
56
15
32
22
20

NAMA Social Housing Provision

 407. Deputy Seán Kyne Information on Seán Kyne Zoom on Seán Kyne asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will report on the use of the National Asset Management Agency stock of housing to alleviate the problem of homelessness and on the introduction of social housing.  [54452/12]

 408. Deputy Seán Kyne Information on Seán Kyne Zoom on Seán Kyne asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if consideration has been given to introducing measures to facilitate the transfer of National Asset Management Agency owned or administered housing stock to local authorities in lieu of the non-payment of the developer contribution; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [54453/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan I propose to take Questions Nos. 407 and 408 together.

Since December 2011 NAMA have identified over 3,800 properties as being potentially available for social housing. The Local Authorities and the Housing Agency are working systematically with NAMA to determine if there is a social housing demand for properties identified as potentially suitable for social housing, including the need for accommodation for those who are homeless. Where a demand is identified this information is provided to NAMA and efforts are made to secure as many of the suitable properties as possible for social housing.

To the end of August 2012, 133 housing units have been provided from the portfolio of units identified by NAMA. Of these units 49 are funded under leasing arrangements with the balance of units delivered purchased with funds from the local authority social housing capital investment programme or by Approved Housing Bodies under the Capital Assistance Scheme. It is a matter for each individual housing authority to allocate available accommodation, whether leased properties or from other sources, to households on their waiting lists, including homeless households, in accordance with their adopted allocation scheme. The charging and collection of development levies is a matter for the local planning authority. The discharge of the development contribution liability in respect of any development is a matter for agreement between the relevant parties.

Mortgage to Rent Scheme Funding

 409. Deputy Willie Penrose Information on Willie Penrose Zoom on Willie Penrose asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the steps he will take to enable local authorities to utilise the mortgage to rent scheme whereby persons in significant areas with their SDA loans with the local authority can voluntarily surrender possession of their home to the local authority who lent them the money and be permitted to continue to reside in the family home as a social housing tenant; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54545/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan On foot of the recommendations of the Keane Report on mortgage arrears the Government launched a mortgage to rent scheme on a pilot basis in February 2012. This scheme was extended nationally in June 2012, targeting those low income families whose mortgage situation is unsustainable and where there is little or no prospect of a significant change in circumstances in the foreseeable future. The scheme ensures that the family remains in their home, while ownership is transferred to an approved housing body who in turn rent it to the original owners. One case has been finalised with several more due to close by year end; however, lenders have put forward in excess of 500 cases and currently are actively engaged with over 100 customers on Mortgage to Rent with a further 100 cases at an early stage in the process.

The numbers of completed transactions is low but significant progress has been made. All of the main lenders and so called sub - prime lenders are fully engaged and have instituted the necessary internal processes. It is also important to bear in mind that the transition from being a homeowner to a social housing tenant is a major one for families. Mortgage to rent or other such interventions cannot be rushed for any party. For example, the process provides a 60 day decision period and a 28 day cooling off period within the timeframe of the scheme. My Department estimates that the overall timeframe per case from start to completed transaction will be up to eight months. This compares favourably to the timeframes in other jurisdictions operating similar schemes.

Two pilot schemes for mortgage to rent in respect of distressed local authority borrowers are underway in Westmeath County Council and Dublin City Council. These are being introduced as part of the Mortgage Arrears Resolution Process which is being implemented by all local authorities. Mortgage to rent for local authority borrowers will be extended to all local authority areas next year.

Household Charge Collection

 410. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will endeavour to ensure that the collection of household charges is structured and streamlined in such a way as to ease the burden on the public in recognition of the on-going economic difficulties; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54549/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The Local Government (Household Charge) Act 2011 provides the legislative basis for the household charge. Under the Act, an owner of a residential property on the liability date of 1 January 2012 is liable to pay the Household Charge, unless otherwise exempted or entitled to claim a waiver. The Household Charge is on a self-assessment basis and it is a matter for an owner of a residential property on the liability date to determine if he or she has a liability and, if so, to declare that liability and pay the Charge.

The collection of the Household Charge is under the care and management of local authorities. I acknowledge that national economic circumstances are resulting in difficulties for many households; I urge any liable person who is having difficulty making payment of the Charge to contact their local authority. As regards the forthcoming Local Property Tax, decisions concerning payment methods will be announced in the context of Budget 2013. The shape and structure of the Local Property Tax, including decisions on the payment options that will be made available to liable persons, will be among the matters to be announced. The Government has decided that the Local Property Tax will be collected and administered by the Revenue Commissioners.

  Question No. 411 answered with Question No. 91.

Climate Change Policy

 412. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will ensure that the impact of carbon reduction is minimised on domestic households until the economic situation improves; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54551/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The Programme for the development of national climate policy and legislation is being progressed   having regard to the commitment in the Programme for Government to provide a clear pathway for emissions reductions, and to Ireland's challenging greenhouse gas mitigation targets which are binding under European Union law. A copy of the policy development programme is available on my Department's website, www.environ.ie .

  Questions Nos. 413 and 414 answered with Question No. 401.


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