Monday, July 1, 2019

100 Measures for A Climate Emergency Strategy - All stake-holders considered

Climate Change Adaptation Strategy
By Frances Micklem 
at Harmony Hall Think Tank, Kilkenny
1stJuly 2019 

Government and County Councils

The Redirection of Money
To Set An Example
To Mediate Between Various Sectors

The Individual

To buy into the emergency climate action plan. 
To educate and be educated
Collective expression of change wanted 
To see justice and fairness, big not small paying the price.
To allay fears


Eviction –the bigger chains will have to go as one county probably won’t be able to effect what they do as a world wide organization.
Staff – to allay fears of redundancy

Self Employed/Small Businesses

Acknowledgment of crucial local skill base 
Supported change
Tax breaks
To allay fears


Savings to be made from good practice
Compensation from meat industry
Pressure – compulsory changes agreed and supported
Support in revisioning business model
Guaranteed local sales even if poor initial harvests
Repurposing land/machinery/stocks
New role for animals.
Heralded as stewards of the land: therefore holding the most important role of being able to plant trees, crops, foods, biodiversity, improve water quality, produce fuel rather than culprits of chemical spraying and responsible for carbon emissions.
To allay fears Sovereignty Food Promotion and support, charcoal, fermenting, natural agriculture, food waste.

100 Actionable Measures

Council and Government Policy

1) For actions to happen they have to be in line with the law. There is a law outlined called Ecocide and it is accepted in some countries already, where companies can be prosecuted for wilfully destroying or polluting areas. We can use some phrases of that law to take some polluters to task, if not to court.

2) Like a firm but friendly bouncer managing a door, revoke licenses and planning applications; audit and give destructive industries instructions and a fixed time to leave or change their practices, in line with climate action objectives.

3) Referendum on climate action and ask what people are prepared to do. This can happen AFTER a detox period, where chemicals and certain foods are banned and people have an idea of what life will be like without them and have been educated on the necessity for these changes and trust that the incentives and supports promised (by the authorities) have been followed through on. 

4) Plastic. Ban one use plastics – things like pasta and coffee producers will be forced to make biodegradable packaging. Check that we only sell the sorts of plastics that we can recycle locally. 

5) Demand that supermarkets eliminate plastic packaging.  Return to the pick and mix shelving and paper bags.

6) Public tender, administered by Repak perhaps or your waste management department, for innovative projects to recycle plastics, with a low toxicity process.

7) Public tender for innovative projects to improve drinking water and protect waterways. For example, affordable water testing kits to check pesticide/hormone/bacteria/fluoride/chlorine levels. Kits to de-salinize water and make it drinkable. Simple filters etc.

8) Public tender for innovative projects to produce a simple grey water system to divert roof water to flush toilets, water gardens and wash clothes.  

9) Water Footprint and Quality Audit and accountability: Leave nothing to the longstanding organizations: Facilitate total transparency and review what is in mains water and water scheme water, by requiring reports on animal waste run-off, pesticide and fertilizer run-off, industry spillage, acid rain and other pollutants, fluoride and chlorine.  

10)  Discuss, locally and nationally, the possibility of exporting water: Managing it nationally because rainfall is our best resource…rather than gas, oil (15% of the world’s total water withdrawal is in the sourcing of fossil fuels and fracking), beef (over 15,000 litres per kg ) dairy (over 1000 litres water per litre milk )inc. whey, casein, calves for veal (Cows responsible for a third of all Ireland’s carbon emissions) and pigs (6000 litres per kg). No other country in Europe has enough fresh water. Ten years ago, they were laying pipes in Spain where rivers were, to carry the water to cities. The surrounding banks and valleys are now  barren rather than lush. See the parallel with the piping of water from the Shannon to Dublin. Each roof can capture enough water to sustain a household and tanks can easily store it. 

11) Sponsor inventories of what chemicals are on our fruit and vegetables. There is a grant (entries just closed on 28thJune) by The Community Foundation For Ireland for biodiversity studies to be carried out by ecologists – testing soil, air, water etc. None of the grant was to be paid to staff members, you had to organize events to engage the community and only ‘non profit’ organizations were eligible. Therefore there was nothing to be gained, apart from an ecology report, if you entered. Even then the report to the foundation had to include measures to change and a commitment to increase biodiversity, which would be another cost to come down on the organizations head. All in all, there was no reward or even support involved and so I suspect that few organizations will have entered, just for the chance to contribute to the national biodiversity plan. They had a lot of money put aside for the fund. I wonder if some would be made available to a late entry by you at the council to carry out an ecological study of the county’s industries. Water and other waste from factories, nearby streams and rivers to the pharmaceutical companies, other manufacturers, power stations and masts in the county. Most processes release dioxins and suspected correlations with high cancer rates could be investigated and pressure applied to  reduce emissions or cease production and clean up after themselves. Potentially, fines could then be redirected to smaller, ethical suppliers.  

12) Sponsor inventories on what antibiotics are in meat – so many calves taken too young and sustained on antibiotics as they didn’t even get the colostrum to build their immune systems before being taken from the cows.

13) Ask the people via the referendum if they are comfortable with live export.

14) Cows bred to produce 70 litres a day rather than 10 litres a day suffer during power cuts and droughts as they can get no relief.

15) Eliminate the contradictions: First, if you want biodiversity, you want the national emblem of the hare and not the licenses granted to trap it all year round for autumn coursing. It is protected and yet hunting is allowed still. Stop all spraying and hedge and verge cutting.

16) Balance the kick-back by subtly offering people who seek to book their coursing tickets, say, a €1 bet on the national lottery or something/anything  less barbaric .

17) Engage the public in their own health. Current public opinion can be used to stop pharmacies selling unsustainable products. There is nothing in Boots and most chemists that have a leaping rabbit symbol on it. Therefore there is nothing that has not been tested on animals. That is not what people in Ireland want any more. This is one of many places where we can use ethics, biodiversity loss and welfare to insist on banning destructive products from the shelves. Highlight the absurdity of using products made with beeswax and honey too. Most people understand or at least are ready to hear, now, that the pollinators are close to extinction and that if they go, our crops and food go too. 

18) It can be tempting to press for change but much more effective if people's fears are addressed. Welcome efforts and suggestions.  State that you support renewable energy and facilitate the start up of low impact, local, low budget projects.

19) Environmentally-led tax breaks. Eg, if you convert your car, house and business to run on plant-based fuel, it is completely recognized in your accounts and taken off tax payable.

20) Food security tax breaks and incentives for those who produce food or teach how to produce food, be it horticulturally or meal preparation or nutritionally, or processing or catering support, in introducing a new way of eating.

21) Food sovereignty tax breaks and incentives for those who produce meals from locally sourced ingredients.  

22) Self sufficiency tax breaks and incentives for low water use, independence from the esb grid, grey water installation, shared transport scheme. 

23) Correct a second contradiction that food giants serve exclusively pesticide-ridden products, often with not one organic or ethically produced item in half an acre of shelves and they get tax breaks as food providers. 
Now they are jumping on the interest in a vegan lifestyle and Coca Cola produce an almond milk now and Magnum a vegan magnum, subway a vegan sandwich and Bakewell a vegan sausage roll. These are mass produced and processed and certainly not organic. We mustn’t let the big companies monopolize this shift of priorities in a cheap (for them) and unhealthy (for us) way. 
This is versus 
Organic producers who are required to label and get certification for every practice and stretch of land they use. They want to use un-dyed paper bags but must use copious plastic to identify their farm as the source. The organic producers should not be taxed at all but allowed to keep any euro profit they make, as it is such hard work, farming organically but genuinely does provide habitat for wildlife, insects and preserves the soil profile. Organic farming also genuinely does produce safe food, chemical free. Insist that Intreo provides 3 weeks' holiday money (like the 180 income support) and co ordinate a register of farm helpers, so organic producers can get away and get help with harvesting, weeding and other labour-intensive processes.

24) Address geo-engineering. There is plenty of photographic evidence of chem’ trailing over county Kilkenny and other counties. First look up the ingredients of chemicals intentionally sprayed by planes, in a supposed attempt to block sunlight and reduce global warming. Look at records of the toxicity to air, soil and local residents too. Find out who is doing it, why, who is paying for it and how to stop it. Please.

25) Address rural transport. One simple solution would be to open school buses to the public. As soon as a youth leaves school there is no way for them to get into the village/town/city for work. Many retired people could spend one day a week, doing their bank, post office and shopping etc and be sure of a lift home. Yes, there might need to be a garda-vetted supervisor on the bus because today’s world is what it is but any parent, local worker or teacher would do. These buses are (and bigger buses could be) going down every road, morning and evening and that’s what’s needed. Ring a link is doing a bit but it is not enough.  

26) Transport. Electric car grants are only open to corporations and not even to medium sized businesses. Make them affordable. Don't insist that all have electric cars as they present their own environmental and social problems, in production. Do not make rural people change their cars or penalise them for driving them - many won't be able to afford to. Lift-sharing should be pushed for and incentivised but people who live in the country can make a much bigger difference, through the maintenance of their gardens, re-wilding, re-purposing, composting and being food independent. 

27) Make eco-choices viable. Currently, photo voltaic solar panel grants do not cover costs. When the grants became available, providers just added the grant amount. Make them affordable. This could be with a simple tax incentive. Eg. if a company provides homes with renewable energy systems, each within the figure of the individual grant paid, then they don’t pay tax on that income.  Try and cut through the idea of fleecing everyone at every turn.

28) Whole streets of buildings are empty - help landlords get tenants back in residence. Owners of individual buildings  with prime position apartments above shops, are offered €40,000 LOAN, not even grant, to get them up to new fire safety standards. Meanwhile, existing tenants must move out, regardless of if there is other accommodation for them. Fire regulation compliance requires major work that would cost at least 75,000 to do. Future rent must then be paid to the council, to pay back that debt. So, instead, the buildings stand empty and tenants must leave or landlords pay a fine. This is part of the bigger problem that HAP and other council housing associations, nationwide, are making millions annually out of low income families. That money could be working wonders for housing provision. 

29) Make all actions have a pay off for the people.  The Town Planning department could approve the renovation of all the upstairs apartments and fit them with renewable energy source and provide central housing for lots of tenants. Don’t make landlords pay for the work that will cost these older people (most home owners in the cities are quite senior now) a whole new mortgage equivalent. You could insist that the rent they charge, after the work is completed, be capped at 450 euro a month, so working couples or even HAP recipients can benefit from the new accommodation created. 

30) Iron out inner contradictions within the use of public money. Like HAP begging landlords to keep tenants simultaneous with the same landlords being threatened with court if they do not evict the tenants. 

31) Offer incentives for house owners and tenants who maintain a pollinator-friendly garden or produce food. Even something small, like 35 euro in a summer month, to those who provide evidence of looking after their garden/land for air quality and biodiversity or for living plastic-free or zero-waste altogether.
32) Tender for high-level innovations like a safe, plastic recycling plant and products. Aim high, it can be administered by Repak perhaps. But make it a plant that produces and processes to a high standard (not melting it down to wax, to coat our eating apples (like Trifol - who have just opened their massive plant in Laois, using 12 million euro and somehow they're allowed to sell it back as edible, a food material. The public would be disgusted if they were educated as to what toxic waste, pesticides and other chemicals are allowed in food. This education will be crucial in cultivating conscientious consumers. People who care and make good choices for their health, the environment and people and animals in the supply chains. We need to make the situations common knowledge and alternatives available. The more environmental recycling plant, which I am proposing would be somewhere where we can direct all existing plastic on land, in circulation and in the Irish Sea and they can make building blocks or whatever creative inventors come up with - non edible suggestions only welcome, you could insist.

33) Ban the production of plastic. Refuse planning permission for further PET plants (plastic bottling and packaging production). Make Ireland the first to decide that we will create no more and import no more plastic. At very least only have the sorts of plastics that we can recycle here in Ireland. You would be amazed what things are considered recyclable but only in plants that are several continents away.

34) Monetize and encourage think tanks. For example, if you use any of these ideas, pay me a token sum for this report. Shift the policy from thinking of all ethical, useful, caring and community-focussed work, ideas and problem-solving as being voluntary and make it a sustainable employment. Start think tanks on every topic. Every discussion hub and even conversation produces a solution or raises a problem. In one day alone, the problem of public transport (as experienced first hand at the cancellation of the crucial bus, linking Kilkenny City to the IT Carlow) was given a solution by the founder of Community Gardens Ireland. Even neighbours who get on well don’t succeed in sharing transport and many communities don’t know each other any more but we should and could open school buses to the public. When innovations and workable, or even brilliant, ideas are recorded and shared with the party or council, recognize their contribution to the emergency strategy. 

35) Introduce cooking and nutrition to schools, based on what we will have as the climate becomes more erratic. Foods grown in Ireland: Plant based protein sources (Nuts, pulses, peas, oats, berries) and non-dairy milks like organic oat milk, easily made here. I have been vegan for 20 years, organic since I started growing here 15 years and a management consultants firm confirmed that vegan is a massively growing trend. They asked me what I was doing now so they would be ahead of the curve. I said, obviously, 'organic immediately' to protect the soil and get the poisons off our food and support insects and wildlife, but then 'raw vegan' is the diet to aim for. If food is not heated above 50 degrees it maintains it vitamin and mineral profile. This allows the body to detox free radicals, build our immune systems - freeing us from pharmaceutical measures, allows our bodies to absorb the full nutrition and it actually nourishes the body as the food is still living also. Imagine, for example, humous made of naturally sprouted pulses and seeds, with fresh herbs and garlic. Every ingredient intrinsically fortifying. 

36) Present a vision everyone wants to buy into. Publicly counter the prejudice against health foods, vegans, vegetarians and organic growers. They will be the main bank of knowledge to affect social change, as they have already had to work out how to live carefully and recognize their impact. Be the example of joined-up thinking and engage all groups with different motivations and priorities. For example, giving up meat and/or animal proteins. Like Leo Vradkar, who did it to reduce his carbon footprint: I went vegan as I have an affinity with animal. Friends and family have made the change and reversed aggressive cancers: Others have, to lower their cholesterol or avoid reactions to a dairy intolerance: Education here as well, could raised empathy with an awareness of the situation in 3rdworld countries (Enough grain is currently produced to feed 13 billion people but 1 billion remain starving and more than half is grown and watered and then fed to meat-eating societies, around the world). Help people realize that the majority of our problems are about sharing rather than provision. Engage those in insecure housing here in Ireland, where there are no cooking facilities and what they can do rather than eat ready-made meals: Engage with people in the wave of concern about farm intensification, slaughter house practices, testing and welfare compliance breaches throughout. Speak freely about food safety issues with convenience foods and promote home cooking and breast feeding, as the best start for children.

Identify and connect the changes we need to make in our policies, businesses and homes, regarding water use, waste, pollution, biodiversity, personal and family health, animal suffering and poverty and housing alleviation.  
They can produce a synergy in motivation rather than conflicts of interest.

37)PHASING OUT does not work. For example, a top-down ruling, that farms must give caged hens 50cm squ.d more room, was made 15 years ago and only 7 member countries achieved it, in that time. We should aim to STOP all the destructive, resource-heavy and polluting practices with immediate effect and then, fairly, share the stocks we have, over the next 10 christmasses or however it can be divided or is decided. With less and less meat in the diet, after 10 years, many will have lost their appetite for it in ten years. In intensive farming, some cows are producing 70 litres of milk a day rather than 10 and suffering painfully in power cuts; some hens are producing 1 egg a day rather than one a month; when there was a shortage of gasslaughter houses started to justify only semi stunning and carbon-heavy gassing of thousands of animals before killing them.  for food are cycles we can stop but they won’t stop themselves. If an industry is intrinsically dependent on exploiting animals it cannot be expected to develop practices that do not exploit the environment. The climate emergency strategy and resulting laws are going to have to define what is allowed and no longer allowed in the county. 
In addition to stopping breeding, untreated waste from farmed animals could be redirected to Biogas energy generators. Farmers wouldn’t have to feed so much as they’re not fattening animals up, just maintenance feeds so that could be organic hay from set aside and not the chemically grown and gmo grains they’ve been depending on. Many farmers I have worked with are still paying off their feed bills from two winters ago and last winter. It is an industry that is unsupportable and one day, I suspect, will be understood as a false economy on many levels.

38) Close all science testing and pharmaceutical facilities. They use 10 times as much energy per square metre as an ordinary office block, they use a chemicals at every stage of sanitation, production, testing and as ingredients. Air pollution includes poisons like dioxins and mercury that stay airborne for years. Water and waste pollution is heavily toxic and a danger to human health, both staff and public, let alone damage to biodiversity. Some estimates say that one quarter of all harmful emissions and pollution in agriculture come from the pet food industry. 
That reminds a person that dog meat is usually meat factory by-product, not considered fit or human consumption. It suggests there is a lot of it but also think of the perfectly plausible alternatives. Take Redmills, for example. They USED TO make a vegetarian dog food but say they have lost the recipe now, when we need it most. No-one was interested at the time. They USED TO sell organic horse nuts. Horse manure is a highly rated manure for growing and organic growers, like myself, rely on it as an alternative to chemical fertilisers  We must have organic manure so as not to be spreading chemicals and GMOs but now we can't get hold of organic horse nuts. They used to do organic pig nuts but every time I bought some, they would have to go looking and say they probably did not have any. In more than a 1000 bags of feed in their new Killeen Hill store, there was only one bag of organic feed. How can we suggest farmers go organic when there is no will in suppliers to make it possible. We could easily incentivise agri-stores like that to make and supply sustainably sourced, chemical and animal ingredient-free products and feeds to first make it worth their while and secondly, encourage those who keep animals and manage land to shift to buying that range. Surely, Woodies should not be still allowed to sell Round Up to every amateur gardener or anyone sell it to anyone, now we know it compromises our endocrine systems and disables our digestive enzymes and is considered a carcinogen...and kills every insect and wildlife and natural plant species  we're trying to protect. The Green Party can place itself as the central knowledge of these things and more importantly, what to do about them.

39) Things not to do. Don’t turn to the big companies for solutions. Don’t allow 5G. Don't accept the first renewable energy company that suggests something. The upright windmills they’ve put around are considered old technology in the rest of Europe. They are intolerable to live beside, disrupting the physiology of people, animals and wildlife and the digging of foundations deep enough to hold them. They are also ineffective in comparison to the horizontal dish technology. The key is to empower and inspire the people, with a subsidized switch to small wind/water/solar/biogas (fuelled by household compost or manure) generators. The roll out of these systems could be paid for via normal monthly billing, until the money is recouped. This will provide households and estates with free and off-grid electricity.

40) Stop the ‘gas lighting’, where authorities suggest that we should pay for water. That pollution is from people not managing their rubbish properly. All the while allowing Nestle to operate and allowing Shell, Dell, Coca Cola etc and increasingly large farming operations to pollute the water and allow companies to drill, quarry and frack and contaminate all the aquifers and ground water. Engage each consumer on the genuine and manifold benefits of changes, the connection between nature and our survival and the necessity to protect the environment. That protection should take the form of consumers demonstrating for government and industry changes but also household changes, not one or the other. Impress on all parties that it is not one individual’s fault, it is a common situation that we all now find ourselves in and with collaboration, accountability and consistency people can make an equally positive impact. Acknowledge previous contradictions and current ones, like permission granted to sonic blast the ocean off the west coast, to map it for fossil fuels, but only allow visits to the Skelligs for 3 months of the year to protect it as national heritage. And the contradiction in allowing Factory trawlers to illegally fish thousands of tonnes over their quota and then policing the shores to penalize local people who catch more than their quota, which is often no more than one ton. Or culling otters for causing the shortage of fish. In the King Scallop Festival of Valentia, they needed to import Donegal scallops. Or any of the culls, like deer which could easily be rehomed or put on common land. The contradictions are not obviously decisions made by government or any one council but if our party shows there is a grasp of these issues, it will show that we are able to understand the concept of inconsistency and the need for consistency as they move forward with this new strategy.

41) Engage the young and the old by respecting their superior knowledge. I have worked with hundreds of school groups, in the last 9 months and every Junior and Senior Cert student and indeed all secondary school age pupils study Ecology and know how to do a field study that surveys the plant and animal/insect species that are present in various habitats. Children could be asked to do a basic report of their own garden habitats and identify 3 shrubs or wild flowers or trees or vegetables that would grow there, considering light and shade, soil acidity and what is there already.  
The older generation know that pesticides are simply the rebranding of the chemicals used in the gas chambers by the Nazis. Now sold as pest control for farmers. People, since the 1960s and before, have been trying to save biodiversity and the environment. ‘Just put away the DDP now. Give me spots on my apples but leave me the birds and the bees. Please!’ Joni Mitchell, Big Yellow Taxi recorded in 1970. Change people’s perception of good food. Organic fruit and vegetables are matt in colour, with no sheen of preserving chemical coating. They may have a few brown spots or have fended off a pest after one or two nibbles of a leaf but they have full nutrition, have not been synthetically ripened in a warehouse. The antioxidants of fruit skins as they ripen are known to have incredible curative effects but now the majority are picked long before they’re ripe, to travel and prolong their shelf life. A common difficulty for old and young and in between is that they've literally never heard of empathy and do not see it as a crucial faculty and practice to instil in others. People have had it too hard to spare a thought for others but part of a strategy will have to be generating solidarity. 

42) Remove the clause in the public tender process, of organizations needing to have two equal-sized financial contracts already before they can awarded one. Instead of established but hard-up charities receiving contracts to move them into full effect in provision of respite or care or whatever, money goes to big companies often with no history of care or experience in the field. It stops innovation, ethical practice, sustainable and unprecendented ideas being implemented. Only what has gone before can get in. Assign contracts on environmental merit and then support the projects with the necessary funds, financial advisors and administration.

43) The Outdoor Education and Adventure Centre governing body charges a membership fee based on income, rather than after costs. This means a not for profit organization, like the Discovery Park with a mission statement to provide local employment and deliver Ecology education and Geological, Historic tours cannot be a part of this umbrella organization. It is the same for Failte and other governing bodies, they have prohibitive fees and costs for an organization's association with them. Tourist accommodation, activities and education centres that provided zero impact eco services, could be given free membership, promotion and related supports. Currently, the most conscientious organizations are missing out on insurance concessions and accreditations. 

44) HSE should serve food that is in line with the World Health Organization’s recommendations. Doctors and equipment should not be sponsored by pharmaceutical companies. Consultants’ offices are adorned with accessories, stationary, tissues and equipment bearing the names of specific nerve painkillers and other products. If the HSE is really prepared to be a part of the return to health, for the individual and the work place and wider environment, they should make their medicines available to those that need it and use natural products, of which there are many that are anti-bacterial, anti fungal and anti viral. This will curb the chemical waste from sanitation.

45) Rural business education. Sponsor a researched article each week in The Farmers Journal on re-purposing, breakdown and sale of machinery, revisioning animal use. Organic growing trouble shooting. Resources and supports for processing organic produce and a list of resources, funding and supports available for the transition to organic, arable, self-sufficient, distribution or community supported agriculture.

46) Emphasize that there are no competing goals but a synergy possible towards the common goal of protecting the environment for the next generation.

47) Respond to all queries not as bothersome details but with a big picture heroism, recognition and confidence that we can carry it off and lead the way.


48) Incentivize changes in farming. If farmers go 100% organic; stop using synthetic fertilizer, pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics and intensive accommodation for animals, guarantee that they will command twice the price for their produce. Also promise that they will be compensated for crop failures or other difficulties and set up costs, during the six year transition period – only after which they get their organic certification. 

NB - A positively spun election message. 'We only need six years to bring Nature back into balance - we know this, we know how to do it and we will do it' 
We can extrapolate from this widely accepted, researched and understood transition period of 6 years for a farm to achieve organic status. The same goes for water management, cleaning up the seas etc. It can be used to the hilt to support compliance with new strong policies. People are saying that there will only be 5 or 6 more harvests in the States because of the soil now being inert. Others are asking for zero emissions. There are these different statistics; either frightening home truths or not achievable climate targets. We, though, can deliver on a promise, as the Green Party, that it only takes six years of good practice for our land to recover. It's very viable and will be a widely welcome alternative to being the puppy farming capital, the animal testing capital and the beef and milk producing capitals of Europe, which is how we are currently seen. We can, instead, be the organic capital of Europe. It would make the Bord Bia Green label mean something. At the moment it doesn't mean anything; that a product has any quality at all, in regards fair trade, welfare, chemical content. Instead, it would command a sustainable market value. Like we led the way with banning smoking we could lead the way by banning chemicals. Once we do it, it will seem so obvious to others, the rest of Europe will follow suit. 

49) Immediate cessation of spraying. Make it compulsory and employ other farmers as advisors, who have made the change to organic.  Enlist ecologists, horticulturalists, crop and tree producers etc to fit suitable crops to reclaimed land. Savings of €40,000 in the first year have been recorded for farmers who stop using agrichemicals. Fertilizer dries out the ground and leaves its natural fertility bereft, from synthetic interventions. Educate the farmers about, for example, the Californian Gold Belt that that is now nearly a desert with over-worked ground, synthetic fertilizers and gmo crops that have put the local residents in a state of asthmatic fear. And Monsanto’s Suicide Belt in India where more than 500 farmers have killed themselves. Ruined, having agreed to use Monsanto’s Round Up Ready seeds and finding that the few seeds they could save from these modified seeds also belonged to Monsanto and they must pay again each subsequent year. Irish farmers know themselves how the fertilizers and sprays are stripping and degrading the soil. They will welcome a supported change.

50) Plant trees. For Ireland to meet its reduction in carbon emissions, it must plant 20,000 hectares of trees. This can raise our food sovereignty as well. Trees are so much more hardy than annual crops. Sponsor nut orchards of native hazel, cob, black walnut and sweet chestnut. Insist that all Coillte planting is of trees with edible fruit, with forest companion planting within, like raspberries and other leafy edible plants that grow well in shade. This will encourage and protect biodiversity and help feed people. Audit and ban Coilte's current spraying of forests and woodlands under their management. It is polluting waterways, making foraging toxic and contrary to the survival of biodiversity and making whole neighbourhoods ill.

51) Find out and do an inventory of what farms and what land are producing which crops. Ask those farmers what they would need to produce without chemicals. Don’t make them compete with products from warmer climates. (That means do not let supermarkets buy in food from other countries that use substances that are banned here). Total food sovereignty and independence can be prepared for and is then possible.

52) Ask livestock farmers what they would need by way of soil improvement and access to machinery to convert to arable crops. Make Ireland a showcase of successful farming economy, without animals, vet bills, agri chemicals and costly and damaging transport, processing and packaging. 

53) Invite tenders for the repurposing of machinery and sheds, here or abroad. Like growing mushrooms in sheds. Protected growing spaces are going to be our saving grace as the climate becomes more unpredictable. Remunerate and support  a compulsory shift to stop breeding. Take meat and animal products out of the shops and put in the meat processing plants’ freezer warehouses. This will avoid a mad rush to buy everything, where a lot would go to waste. Like when there was heavy snow and the first shoppers, who made it to the supermarkets, bought all the bread and most of it went off while other people could not even get a loaf.  

54) Look at unleaded petrol and diesel and see if it’s viable. Air pollution from diesel is linked to lung disease and heart attacks and yet 80% of the EPA fleet of vehicles, used to police air pollution, are run on diesel. However unleaded petrol is, it still impacts negatively at the extraction, refinement, transport and consumption phases. Electric cars and hybrids are a start  but what about the mining and slave labour in the battery supply chain. They also rely on big manufacturers. They are not making them affordable. I applied for a grant for an electric car a few years ago, from the SEAI and was told only corporations were eligible; not even smaller companies or self employed individuals - when we would be the ones surely needing a grant. Biodiesel works in diesel cars with no modification to the engine needed. Vegetable oil works in petrol cars, with a cheap adaptation kit (£250 sterling when I investigated and a local manufacturer could be diverted to making them, at a similar price in euro, and local garages trained to fit them. Biofuels are another crop that farmers could be supported in starting. Bioethanol is created by the sugar fermentation process and so that might regenerate Ireland’s sugar beet industry again, making us again more independent of imported refined sugars and their carcinogenic burden. And why have we not got one organic sugar beet supplier? 

55) Gear education away from old routes. Currently 500 new Fetac students undertake a qualification in conventional pig farming each year. This is despite effluent, slurry, none of the 5 freedoms granted, testicle, tail and teeth removal without anaesthetic, biting and other behaviour and a necessary increase in the use of antibiotics to stem disease, as they are getting less and less effective. This is compared to less than 50 studying  Horticulture, which is what I qualified in most recently. We need accreditation to promote and implement good land management practice and that to be seen as the most useful and viable businesses to be involved with, letting go of the idea of animal farming, breeding, milking. There has to be an imaginative, straight forward and beneficial way for rural Ireland to help Nature and the Climate. We have so much water, thankfully and clement temperatures, generations of know-how and strong communities still. Most importantly, a major distrust of politicians and big industries and a resulting competence and independence to get along as much as possible, without them. We must get rid of the non-tax-paying, non-compliant, wouldn't be welcome anywhere else companies like Merck, who have at least 800 lawsuits against them for their vaccinations gone terribly wrong in the States. We should not welcome them with open arms and tax suspensions. We should independently audit their environmental impact, fine them and then send them away by making compliance and tax too expensive for them.

56) European grants apparently go to farmers but in reality they don't. The money arrives on the exact day that vets' bills, pharmaceutical and agrochemical supplies bills arrive. A massive portion goes to people who are not even farmers but have massive over-filled fattening and finishing feedlots. Now Europe has offered an 'animal health' scheme, which consists of another vaccine, towards which the farmer will receive 10 euro per animal who receives it. The farmer pays the bill and for the vet -  as farmers, most likely, will have to have signed proof that they did indeed vaccinate the animals - and then he can send in the paperwork and get the rebate of some of it. In no shape or form will the scheme benefit the animals (it is the conditions they're kept in and how long the young are allowed to stay with their mothers that affects their resistance to illness). It will not benefit the farmers as it will give them more work, more treatments to dispense to animals. Another bill to pay, more paperwork to do. Probably the €10 will cover only a portion of those costs and none of their time and add no value to the livestock. And, of course, only vaccinate against one strain of something when any number of strains might well mutate and show up. There is no better protection for man or beast than a healthy immune system. (This can be the Green Party's second motivating tag line. If it resonates with people and it will, it can be tied in with reducing the vat on health supplements to zero again, for starters, and getting poisons out of our food etc)! We really don't want a nanny state with companies, that produce medicines, in charge of our health. They have too great a vested interest in us being ill. 
Pharmaceutical companies in the States have overt mission statements like 'to have every citizen on an average of four prescribed medicines, from cradle to grave'. It sounds macabre, but those same companies are operating here in Ireland.

57) Help farms become power suppliers via biogas (animal muck being cheaply and easily converted into heating gas for local areas. Connect people with their food and local growers and farmers in Community Supported Agriculture Schemes (CSAs) - where everyone pays a small amount each week, whatever the season and the farmer delivers produce that's in season. Many then also volunteer to help with harvesting and other key events and jobs in the calendar.  Plant waste can also be highly useful when turned to charcoal, in feeds and in purifying water to a high standard.


58) Educate and excite people about the brown bin.  Make it accountable and free.

59) Educate regarding the word ‘Organic’: It means A) Is a natural material and will biodegrade. Organic also means B) Food grown from seeds and soil without use of or residues from chemicals and no chemicals used in production, cleaning, ripening or preservation to extend shelf life etc.  A and B are two very different things.  A is good enough for composting but B is what will halt the degradation of the environment. 

60) Educate the public via programmes/broadcasts and videos on where plastic waste ends up, in forests and oceans and the micro plastics in our bodies and how it doesn’t break down. Enlist the coastal communities in cleaning up the shores and beaches. Most Irish fishermen are out of work now with the prohibitive quotas given to them versus European factory trawlers and the dead zones - of no fish at all - that are all around the coast as result (the factory trawlers catch big and small in their nets that are the size of two football pitches but they discard the small, dead as they are, so the area can't repopulate. Simon Coveney said he wasn't even allowed at the table when fishing rights were being distributed in Europe.  He has continually lied and I have proof and he cares for no-one but himself but it is still serious if Ireland's representatives are not allowed to negotiate for our environment and our livelihoods. 

61) Public health.  Vegetables. Potatoes that are not organic are sprayed up to 30 times with pesticides. That is a lot of residue. Make people aware how much chemical residue there is in and on all supermarket food. There is a legal maximum and everything and everyone has shot past it-as the survey of urine samples of MEPs showed. Unanimously 4 times above the safe level to have in the body. And it's accumulative, it won't pass through our digestive systems unless we actively and thoroughly detox. Nutrition should clearly be taught in medical colleges to this end and because so many diseases start from the gut and digestive system. But it is not even a module. We could make it compulsory. Doctors do not like to confess that they are ignorant of something so lots of root causes, in people's diets, are missed or dismissed or both.

62) Encourage people to grow their own food and share the things that grow well for them and in their particular terrain. Raise awareness and interest in food sovereignty as a goal, telling people that it consists of buying food from local sources and at least from Ireland. We have a great opportunity as we still have a clement climate and still enough water.   

63) Stipulate that people should save their ‘grey water’, redirecting their guttering down pipes to water butts and reserves. Their gutter water could happily flush toilets and water gardens all through the year. In Dublin and other cities this should implemented at once. Fresh water should only be used for cooking and drinking.

64) Raise the appreciation for what we have. Not by charging carbon emissions or fuel consumption but by educating: Why do we love trees?! Why do we love worms?! I teach Ecology and Industrial history and find that people are oblivious to so much, empathetic about hardly anything and, on the whole, fastidious about insects, germs and cleaning which makes them very easy to scare into using bleaches and pest control.We need to inspire the public to have an inclusive approach to make room for all the different species and beneficial insects at least and be able to distinguish between those and harmful ones.  

65 ) Educate people: A simple booklet on how pesticides incapacitate four of the digestive enzymes and how they are carcinogenic, with one in every two people in Ireland developing cancer.

66) Contradiction three: Explain how sugar accelerates cancers and how the many problems of conventional treatments are made worse by patients being given boiled sugar sweets to cheer them up after chemotherapy.

67) Promote the simple personal changes alongside a national shift to Irish food. Not simply the Green label though as that brand's food is grown using the same poisons. But they can look for other labels like the leaping rabbit of cruelty free or the fair-trade certification, or rain forest alliance, or vegan or organic etc. More importantly make the big producers label what pesticides and other chemicals they used in their products. Why penalise the small, trying-to-be-ethical farms? And meat should have welfare standards label for the animals lives, slaughter and export alive or dead. That would wake a lot of people up. And vegetables reading something like sprayed 15 times in 3 months for pests, scab and blight would also clarify  the poisons and raise awareness that a duller looking item might be better for us, as not sprayed or coated. Only regular articles will cut through old conceptions like 'organic food does not taste any better'. We have probably lost our radar that connects taste with what's good for us, if our inclination towards sweet and fast foods is anything to go by. Clean food is something though people could get excited about, especially people cooking for a family where it matters to them that they thrive.

68) Clean food should also be served in hospitals, schools and other residential settings. Organic food, no salt (dehydrating for kidney patients), sugar (addictive, feeds cancer cells and weight gain), meat (takes years for the body to break down and from animals raised in dubious welfare conditions, eggs that lead to an overload of protein, milk or extracted dairy proteins. This has been implemented in other countries.
Organizations and individuals may say that they can’t afford to buy organic ingredients but if they set the same budget as the previous year, caterers can work within in. It is not a real argument that not enough chefs know how to produce a balanced healthy diet and avoid food intolerances at the same time; I know, for example 10 kilkenny-based chefs well able to feed a hospital, school, hotel or anywhere that needs a great amount of meals delivered to exactly that remit - no animal ingredients, no chemicals and no sugar - but wholesome nourishing meals.

69) Teach basic horticulture and herbal medicine for immune support and first aid, to relieve dependence on pharmaceuticals and the HSE. Call for the reversal of the new, inappropriate 13% tax on natural food supplements in Health Stores. The government argued they weren't food and they weren't medicines, when they are actually time-honoured foods and herb/mineral extracts, held in high regard for their fortifying and healing properties for hundreds of years.

70) Insist on chemical and phosphate-free detergents and all household products. There are some things where the consumer leads the way with their choices but if supermarkets were not allowed to stock any environmentally damaging chemical cleaners, consumers would buy what is there.

71)  Waste management. Promote again the principles of reducing and separating household rubbish. Encourage people to take a pride in it. There is already a group called Zero Waste Kilkenny among which there are people who can advise and give talks etc. There is a lot of interest in setting up zero-waste shops without plastic packaging and using like a pick and mix shelving for pulses and grains and everything else, where people shovel out the quantity they want and it is then weighed. In such a shop I bought plastic-free, vegan chewing gum, a deodorant bar with no chemicals paragons etc in it, charcoal water filters, a fabric reusable tea bag so we can go back to leaves rather than the bleached common teabag of Barrys etc, all of which contain plastic too.  

72) Help people connect the horrendous displacement and insecurity of climate refugees with wars, political agendas, manufactured consent of big money interests and the misuse and exploitation of resources. Help people spread their awareness to places already devastated by climate change both floods and droughts. Cultivate empathy, inclusion and compassion.

73) Help them connect water and wars – like in Syria and really understand that water is Ireland's gold dust resource to be protected at ground water, aquifer, coastal and deep sea level.

74) Teach about the algae in the ocean that provide 40% of our oxygen.

75) Teach about animal agriculture causing 40% of our carbon emissions but not to blame the farmers or put harder strictures on them but to encourage people to rethink, lend a hand and financially support how farmland be used better. A system that uses animal manure and grazing is going to work well as the land transitions to crops, trees, orchards, re-wilding, set aside and more cultivated sheltered to produce a wider range of vegetables and grains. The animals can have their place but stop the breeding and slaughtering. 

76) Let local media explore the connections with meat and dairy and environmental issues and contradictions within future policies, like to increase the national herd. If people are informed, then adaptation plans are more likely to be adopted and pressure put on businesses to supply and meet the new demands for harmless, ethically sourced products.

77) Give a free medical card to all who adopt a vegan organic lifestyle. As a party, we can put our money where our mouths are and support those who are helping themselves and the environment already.

78) Free road tax to those who convert their cars to bio diesel or vegetable oil or create shared transport solutions. There are so many taxes that it would be quite simple for Revenue to adjust tax credits and clearance when proof of changes are included in tax returns. 

79) Divert funding to provide converters to car owners. Make it an inviting prospect. There are many mechanics who are already very busy but a new wave of trainees could leave college having done this as one of their modules and walk into definite employment as so many people will want to get their car converted.

80) Provide solar/wind/water or biogas systems to city and village housing estates so they generate their own electricity. Redirect their average ESB payments to the council for 8 years and then the instalments and turbines will have paid for themselves and people will have renewable and free electricity from then on. Make the situation hopeful, do-able and beneficial. 

81) Instead of fines, carbon taxes and pressure, you can decide the framework, provide what’s needed and benefit the quality of life as well. Leaving citizens with a few extra euro in their pocket rather than less and less, with every new austerity measure.

82) Insist on grey water systems being put on all buildings old and new builds, so that rain water is redirected for flushing toilets, washing up, caring for animals and growing vegetables. 

83) Recondition people to trust our immune systems to recover if we don’t expect products and environments to be sterile. As a Master Composter, trained by Stop Food Waste, I think this can become a school subject too, including doing inventories of what you have in the fridge, freezer and dry storage. Learning what goes with what and how to make interesting balanced combinations. How to make active compost and make the soil rich in the garden from it. Let people know the vast percentage of each food stuff is wasted - at the farm as they can't harvest it in time, or the supermarkets have already ordered foreign vegetables as the Irish harvest is uncertain, or the vegetables and fruit are damaged or just not perfect in uniform shape and colour and size. Then it is left at the farm. Then the supermarkets will only display it for a certain length of time and then in our own kitchens we have become dependent on 'use before' dates, when we can actually tell by eye if an item has become rancid or wilted or otherwise inedible. People need to think for themselves and not take any food stuffs for granted. Even if it means making older vegetables into a soup or breaking up an old loaf for the birds. Just not to put anything in landfill, especially not green waste.

Corporations, Supermarkets, Companies

84) Shops should provide a well-marked and promoted section: “Local” “Organic” or “Irish” and “Not sprayed” as a provisional way to promote farmers' produce who are in the transition to organic practice. (They can’t get organic certification until their land is 6 years without chemical use as you will know).

85) Audit external and internal monitoring of business’ environmental impact. This can be new as we are facing a newly recognised crisis. For example Pasta Concepts finds it cheaper to let the pasta machine plough on during lunch, even though the ton or more of pasta made is wasted as workers are on their break. This is vastly wasteful obviously and could be easily rectified by insisting that the company staggers the workers' lunches and /or captures the pasta automatically for some lesser use than individual packaging for sale or ready-meals. Human and animal charities are very short of food and it could go to them. The same with just out of date produce in Supermarkets. Tesco started something but it is the people who transport food who will not facilitate the deliveries or storage of excess goods. It is not as lucrative or easy to keep health and safety compliance going when you have some older foods and no one wants the responsibility of the food making someone sick at the homeless shelter or whatever. Some countries have it sorted but the Irish are still too litigious and the companies too tight-fisted...and the charities have no say-so or sway.  

86) Incentivize community gardens at industrial estates and companies. Sell the idea as having a well-documented link to staff well being and productivity increase. By managing plants or a section of land or being resourceful or letting off steam digging, all can be included in individual or company-level recognition. 

87) Tackle the problem that pharmaceutical companies are not participating in their communities at all. They are charging with a massive profit margin on crucial medicines. For example Pembro (short name for a throat cancer drug. Each injection of the drug made here by Merck in Carlow, costs €5,000. Consultants prescribe a series of 30 injections.) People are holding charitable fund-raisers, one I attended called 'John needs Pembro' to get hold of the drug he needs. With so many Irish people with cancer, fundraising amongst one's friends isn’t viable. Several organisers contacted Merck to see if they would match the funds raised or donate an initial treatment as a raffle prize or out of good will and there was a very cagey response 'as if they were doing me a favour, even talking to me', one caller described it. Big pharma in general are pushing a compulsory programme of vaccines, many of them only recently invented and no one knowing what will be the consequences 30 years down the line for people who receive them. Many say a vaccination only covers a person for 5 years which makes them highly unaccountable for anything that happens beyond that date. We should not be against vaccinations but be against all health policy advice from companies that make and sell the very things they are recommending. It used to be the Dairy Council that wrote the Health and Nutritional literature. They recommended milk for calcium for healthy bones and teeth etc. Now we have pharmaceutical companies recommending multiple vaccinations for young children, whose systems are all different and bad side effects are common, even proven now in court. In the States, people are not allowed to go to work now unless they have the full complement of vaccines - something like 56. And doctors are de-robed. And children sent home from school. We must not let that happen here as it is just a cornered market not a public health plan at all.

If you have to send some companies away as their non compliance to new environmental measures is too bad, we can look at the skill set of staff and offer coaching to re-locate them to environmentally-led organisations. This is called upstairs coaching and there are many people trained in it, to help large swathes of people in companies, who are making them redundant, see what transferable skills and options they have and get their CVs and applications ready and jobs lined up. Many people who might have worked in laboratories and offices will be glad of a period of manual or practical work, to help the environmental effort.

88) Ban and make law to force companies to produce compostable products. Make sure planning permission departments are coherent in including comprehensive waste separation and disposal systems, including recycling and compost systems. At the moment, reed bed systems are only allowed if a full septic tank system is also installed. We have to take the risk of allowing the heavy reliance on chemicals go. 

89) In the first year, it would be fair to require an updated outline of the Corporate Social Responsibility policies of every company; Put the onus on them to work out and demonstrate how they will manage growth and sustainability goals.  

90) Eliminate contradictions: No planning permission or lending for growth in herd and dairy producing equipment when we need to reduce emissions and the value of produce is going down and plunging everyone into debt: No licenses or registering businesses that require the exploitation of habitat or use of chemicals for cleaning etc: Require new projects and businesses to meet different requirements, such as meeting a societal need without damage to the environment, instead of merely demonstrate their economic sustainability. 

91) Build a third sort of local economy. The current linear economy says that we buy something and when it breaks down we dispose of it and buy a new one. In a circular economy, companies ask us to rent and they will maintain and replace what we need when it breaks down, disposing responsibly of the old. But that doesn't happen here, it is just a means to tie consumers into a contract, so the company themselves have proof of an on-going income and can borrow money against it and grow their business. It works in other countries because retired people are looked after but here, the only thing they might have (and need to have) is to own the roof over their heads. We need to extricate ourselves from big companies. In contrast to thousands entering IT and science-based degrees, deliberately raise the profile of a practical education. Offer education grants for people to train in maintenance, upkeep, organic land management, plant science, and basic competencies and innovations in DIY self-sufficiency, so that we don’t remain a hopeless dependent population; in terms of fuel and food. 

92) Fuel Industry. Many charities deal with poverty world-wide where a country or government will no longer support life. People will be heading for Ireland so it is in our interest to support broader concerns than Ireland’s own. Oxfam supports the call to close all solid fuel power stations. In Kilkenny, we have the history of all the previous mass extinctions and of the period before each when trees and a massive diversity of insects and creatures, colonized the land – all of which was desert beforehand. That was 400 million years ago. Kilkenny also has the history of the solid fuel industry. The coal mining history which is still in living memory was a dangerous and toxic extraction process. Mining inevitably came to an end, as the coal seams are themselves 320 million years old. People can be educated through this history as to the fact that coal is not a renewable energy. Peat and turf too must be publicly understood too. Also hundreds of millions of years ago, 30 metres of peat might be expected to compress into 1 metre of coal. It’s very old and finite. Also, people can be taught that the bogs and turf are very valuable as a carbon sump. It is Ireland’s version of the Amazon Rainforest. Not now though, where the turf has all been dug up and left nothing. Bord na Mona can be stopped from extracting more though and people told to stop buying peat based composts for their gardens and briquettes for their fires. Of course there are individuals who have an acre of bog and take turf each year and of course there are individuals who have a few animals and a cottage industry. It is not the small holdings we should go after though. It is only when it is scaled up that practices become so exploitative and destructive as to be rightly charged as ecocide.

93) Immediate cessation of chemical use in all industries. The extent of chemical use is hard to conceive, let alone address. Many companies sluice down their production lines with chemicals several times a day. Most things that are made are packaged and even made with synthetic, toxic materials. Companies are going to have to share their processes in a comprehensive audit and probably external consultants help and ensure that they convert their businesses and products to sustainable alternatives. If it can't be done or they refuse, the business will have to close. The buildings and equipment can be compulsory purchased and converted to better uses, under a different management team.

94) It will be important or the EPA to test water output of companies into ground water, streams and rivers nearby. Ireland has confirmed our commitment to the climate summit agreement. However big businesses, of which we have many, still only will have a short term view. We will have to address and get rid of disastrous corporations, like Nestle who will own our water if we’re not careful. Or probably already do. Monsanto/Bayer and other agrichemical companies have bases in Ireland and fossil fuel, gas and pharmaceutical companies: Dioxins as a side effect and byproduct of these, contaminate, as do other ingredients and substances used. 

95) ‘Big Pharma’ and ‘Dairy Giants’ are in bed, in Ireland as pills and tablets are coated in casein - This is a dairy product that is carcinogenic in itself. High cancer rate around and environment destroyed. The Kerry Group, Glanbia Dairy and Kepak, ABP and Queallys/Dawn meat bosses are politically powerful in Ireland but we do have a Senator for the Agricultural Panel and we do have an Green MEP  and therefore potentially support from Europe in taking on these big polluters and players.  Even in Ireland there might already be enough evidence against them to fine them and finance, agricultural changes that way, rather than by tax payers money, which is already stretched.

96) Somehow bigger companies scale everything up to such an extent that even vegan food production will probably become destructive, even though it uses only 20% of the water footprint of animal agriculture. Try not to let Coca Cola and Mr Crumb etc monopolise the shift to a newly environment-conscious national diet. There needs to be small producers encouraged in each county so there is a genuine independence. People also need to learn to cook or they will be stuck eating Linda McCartney sausages and oven chips for the rest of time, and that's if they can produce enough even. For example, Dean Dairy giants in America bought Alpro (the main non-dairy milk, cream and yoghurt etc range). That was three years ago when Alpro were thinking of going organic. More importantly, at the end of last year, Dean declared bankruptcy as there has been a crash in the demand for dairy. What this meant was that the operations have been kept running by grants, but most of the staff have lost their pensions and jobs. Since they took over Alpro they have put up the price of a carton of non-dairy almond or soya etc by 50 cent every year. Somehow, if we can promote more nut orchards in Ireland we can produce our own nut milk but oat already is possible. To maintain integrity and not penalise consumers for making ethical choices like vegan or organic, a governing body is going to have to monitor the level of fair trade in terms of what is being imported and by whom. I'm sure that a department for that already exists but a new set of priorities will have to be instilled, focusing on sustainability and fair trade, rather than sheer quantity and economy. 

97) Even processed convenience foods, on a large scale, use a fraction of resources electricity, water and land, if plant based. Still, the very last thing we want is tonnes of pesticide-ridden vegan ready meals hitting the shelves, full of palm oil and GMO soya and corn. Somehow we have to keep the reins and use the climate message to motivate and justify the strongest of actions and the most radical of claims.

98) Don't turn a blind eye to geo-engineering and chem'trailing (the dropping of chemicals out of planes). There is a massive area of Donegal that has been monitored as so much wildlife has died and water sources polluted. A group started testing. Some think that it is waste product from mining that is being dropped. Some think that it is done to protect the atmosphere from the global warming, caused by a compromised ozone layer. Whatever and why ever and whoever is doing it, it remains the only bit of deliberate climate change that people can actually see happening. The planes systematically go in lines up and down over a large area. Unlike the ordinary discharge from a plane, a white line that disappears quickly as the plane goes by, chemical trails stay there, in visual stripes across the sky and the residue and impact of the chemicals is there to measure in the soil. Kilkenny is bad too but Ryan Air and other main passenger airlines are rumoured to dispose of these loads too. It will need to be investigated and could be a reason why they can keep their fares low. Like Stena Line and Irish Ferries increasing income through live export, despite a promise to the people that Ireland would not allow it again. And even the fracking companies need to be monitored. There has been one or two that were surveyed and drilled but found no gas. This seemed like a victory for the Earth and neighbourhood but I gather that they will not have walked away from all that preparation and expense empty handed. They have a market for their empty gas fields too, where they sell space to bury nuclear waste. The main thing is to focus on legislating and taxing and penalising the big corporations rather than pressurise local people to cycle and only take short showers etc. It might seem hopeless for a party or pressure group to take on a massive unscrupulous company, where there is no one specifically who is culpable. Still, Monsanto was ordered to pay 90 million to one town for destroying their water supply and there have been other successes and the 800 law suits ongoing against Merck and I'm sure all the others. The Charles River Laboratory who provide a 'continuum of testing' on animal models for novel drugs decided of its own accord to close after inspectors reported the worst welfare non compliance ever seen. They got a license to open up again in Ballina but the responsibility for recovering, treating and rehoming 500 dogs and 300 cats was given to the ISPCA. The laboratory were not asked to even contribute let alone were they fined. Because they were so ill-treated, Charles River were allowed to keep the ISPCA out for several months while they rehabilitated the animals. It is so important that the right party takes the responsibility for the damage they've done; the meat bosses to the farmers, the pharmaceutical companies to those whose lives are ruined by unnecessary, short-tested drugs - not the HSE, as was the case when the girl recently proved that a school vaccine and brought on irreversible and debilitating narcolepsy. It was not the HSE's product. 

99) As Minister Creed said, ‘there has been a shift in societal expectations’. This is what the Green Party can harness; the will of the people. The vision proposes two referendums (or at least preparation for them before a General Election), one to establish what the public are prepared to do to protect the environment and secondly an animal referendum to ask how people would like to see animals treated in various industries. We take the opportunity to educate the public in a comprehensive booklet - as they did for the same sex marriage referendum and also the literature produced by the state on 'what to do in an emergency'. This would be exactly the context to inform people on what are the problems, how they connect to diet, transport, economics and personal impacts on people and animals. It would deliver a clear message on how the party would address them and act as a comprehensive manifesto and plan, which none of the other parties have. This education combined with the hopeful message that Nature can still win and that we still have a window of time will be a compelling combination for voters. The period we will talk about is 6 years; a familiar framework for land recovery, as it is the period it takes, research says for trace poisons to disappear and land can be certified organic - chemical free. We can extrapolate a macro national and coastal recovery plan from that. The banning of toxic agri products and plastics will have to start with a Chemicals Amnesty, including a 'buy back scheme' where agri-companies will have to leave Ireland but first buy back the banned products. Or if they cannot be trusted, we can manage the safe disposal too. Farmers will be supported and the sale of their produce guaranteed although the soils natural microbial protections from minor blemishes and yield-reducing diseases may well take the six years to come back. There are natural agriculture farms dotted around Ireland that have taken this approach and can advise. More importantly, they can confirm that it really does only take the 6 years, maximum, for land to come alive again with it's natural soil networks.

100) People, farmers and SMEs are going to have to be supported in making the changes, in order to meet the demands of a longer term view, including imminent climate change and the lifespan of our children. To be successful, the party can engage the belief and participation of the population. We will have to be transparent and consistent about putting ecology and sustainability at the beginning of every decision making process and at its end. Quality of life will take on a whole new meaning, with public health at the fore and technology taking a back seat.
Through the law of Ecocide, using the evidence obtained by FOI from the DAFM, the biggest polluters and exploiters can be fined. Penalties can be directed to sponsor clean ups and finance new projects.

This document might make a good framework for the green issues education booklet. I also have worked on a Referendum for Animals survey and I have also worked as a legal advocate for senior food safety managers and educational policy, as well as working as a social worker and Resettlement Worker for homeless people for several years. If you need any of those documents, forum proposals or affidavits to move the cause forward, they are all available. Many thanks.

Frances Micklem


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