Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Kieran McCarthy is calling on the people of Cork to have their say on the draft Cork City Climate Action Plan 2024–2029. Photo: John Allen

Public input crucial to city climate plan

Cork City Council is calling on the public to get involved in a plan to make Cork one of the healthiest, most sustainable, and most resilient places in Europe.

Public input will play an important part in the Cork City Climate Action Plan 2024–2029 which will require residents, businesses, community groups, and public sector institutions to take action to help reduce emissions.

According to the Cork City Council Climate Action Unit team, Cork has an enormous task ahead, with a need to retrofit buildings, reduce the reliance on fossil fuels, protect the natural environment, and adapt to the changing climate. However, some of that work has already begun, with the greening of public spaces, the expansion of the cycling network, and improvements in public transport networks.

Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Kieran McCarthy, said: “Cork city is experiencing climate change. If we are to thrive as a city, we must all work together.

“Cork city’s participation in the prestigious EU Mission on Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities encourages us to go even further, to accelerate our journey to ‘net-zero’ through innovative and bold action.

“I invite you to contribute to the draft plan by telling us what you think of it and suggesting ways to strengthen it even more,” added the Lord Mayor.

Ireland’s national target is to halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and all local authorities are required to develop plans that outline how a 51% reduction can be achieved at a local level.

Cork City Council Chief Executive, Ann Doherty, stressed the need for public input, saying that “the Climate Action Plan will be an important milestone in our journey towards a sustainable future”.

Ms Doherty said: “Through a series of workshops during the summer, we listened to a diverse range of voices that have informed the draft plan. We know that people living and working in Cork are aware of the risks but are also aware of the health benefits of climate action. We now want to know what people think of the pathway we are suggesting for a safe and prosperous future for the city. This is important so that the transition to a sustainable future works for everyone.”

The public consultation on the Climate Action Plan is now open and will remain open until Wednesday 20 December. Any member of the public can make a submission and express their views on the plan through Cork City Council’s Online Consultation Portal found at consult.corkcity.ie.

Members of the Climate Action Unit will also host sessions in each of the City Libraries in the week commencing Monday 27 November.