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03/30/2017 12:00:00 AM


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Bord na Móna

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Bord na Móna

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Bord na Móna

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Environment\Bord na Móna, issues relating to

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Deputy Denis Naughten

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Denis Naughten

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Snippet Contents:

I thank Deputy O'Louglin for her questions. I want to make it quite clear that I could have kicked this can down the road, not made a decision and told Bord na Móna not to invest in the UK operation. Had I done that, within 12 to 18 months, Deputy O'Loughlin and her colleagues would be asking why I did not take any action to try to save the Kilberry plant and the horticulture operation. I would be criticised for not supporting Bord na Móna when it put a proposal forward that would retain as many Irish jobs as possible. My priority is to retain as many Irish jobs as possible. It is not Government policy to invest in operations outside of this jurisdiction unless there is a clear economic and employment dividend within this State. It is not my job, as Minister, to allow investments like that to take place within the semi-State companies that are under my control. NewERA, on my behalf and that of the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, looked thoroughly at this proposal and scrutinised it carefully, as it does with any proposal, particularly where it involves investment outside of this jurisdiction. It found that the best way to retain the maximum number of jobs possible was to take the approach that is being taken by the company.
I am disappointed to hear the Deputy's comment regarding employees being afraid to put legitimate questions forward. That should not be the case and I am quite happy to facilitate a meeting between management at Bord na Móna and the Deputies from the constituency so that the latter can relay the worker's questions to management and get clear answers.
I wish to make one final, important point, which is that we do not have the availability of green waste here. It is a condition now for selling these products in the UK that they must contain a certain percentage of green waste. Part of the problem is that when people are using their brown and green bins, they are contaminating them. A substantial amount of the brown and green bins in this country are being contaminated. That has an impact on employment, not just in the Kilberry operation but in terms of other potential operations across the country.