Turf sale ban ‘the wrong move, at the wrong time – penalising the wrong people’
Sinn Féin, spokesperson on Agriculture Matt Carthy TD, has criticised the government’s “mixed messages” on a proposed ban on the sale of turf later this year. He shares his views.
The government’s plan to ban the sale of turf from September is another sign that they are out of touch with rural communities and the cost of living crisis that is hitting people.
While government leaders are playing games, it appears that they still do not understand that this is about people just wanting to be able to heat their homes.
Government actions and other factors have made that increasing unaffordable. Turf is the last available option for many.
Turf has been one of the only forms of heating not to see prices spiral in recent months.
The government’s plan punishes communities who rely on turf, instead of introducing measures to support communities in transitioning away from this form of heating in a way that is fair and sustainable.
Like the unfair carbon tax, it hits those on the lowest incomes and in rural areas hardest while failing to go after the major polluters.
Climate change is one of the biggest issues facing our planet, and urgent action is required.
But ill-thought-out policies like this damage environmental protection by alienating communities. We must ensure that communities can support climate action in a fair and workable way.
The government could have identified several years ago the homes which use turf, to ensure that they received adequate support to help them with a fair transition.
Instead, they failed to do so and have now gone straight to this punitive measure.
This proposed ban on the sale is the wrong move at the wrong time and will penalise the wrong people.
Sinn Féin will oppose this measure and continue to advocate for climate action and public health measures that do not penalise those without alternatives.