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1916 Quarter Development Bill 2015

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Snippet Contents:

I welcome the opportunity to debate the commemorations of the 1916 Rising and I am glad to support the Government position on the legislation. I am delighted that on 31 March 2015, to protect and conserve this national monument, the Government made a decision to purchase Nos. 14 to 17 Moore Street to preserve these buildings and in recognition of their historical importance in our nation's history and to safeguard them for the future as an historical landmark. We have had many debates in the past, particularly among Members from Dublin, and there will be many in the future about how we commemorate the Rising. It is an important time of reflection first and foremost. It will give us an opportunity to look back on the journey our nation has taken from that incisive point in our history to date. Many of the hallmarks of what has made us a great nation were personal sacrifice and, in the case of 1916, many paid the ultimate sacrifice with their own lives. Nowadays, we are probably more individualistic in our outlook and, at times, the downside of that is we can be more self-serving but the general outlook of people at that time was very much motivated by the common good and a greater good not just for themselves but for future generations. We owe a great deal to our founding fathers and those who came after them to carry on that tradition.
When we reflect on contemporary issues facing us, global warming and climate change are topical at the moment. We have to be bold and fierce in tackling this issue. It will have an effect on us individually, on business and on agriculture. The way in which we face up to that at the times we are called on will be important. The climate change debate is complex and not so straightforward because burdens, some financial, will be placed on people. In the case of the carbon tax, we have to safeguard people from fuel poverty where they have no choice other than to burn fossil fuels because they cannot afford, for example, a different heating system or to buy an electric car. We also have to safeguard business from the point of view of competitiveness.