20 August 2002 – Environmental groups are to protest the decision of the Irish governnment to proceed with the construction of two peat burning power plants at the upcoming Earth Summit in Johannesburg.

Earth Summit Ireland will be outlining the country’s failure to meet the target set for it under the Kyoto protocol and insist the Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions are currently double those set by the protocol.

Under the Kyoto Treaty, Ireland was one of the few countries allowed to increase greenhouse gas emissions but already it has overshot the projections and must cut back by 13 per cent in order to meet its target by 2010.

Campaigners say that instead of burning peat land in two new power stations, alternative sources such as wind power stations should have been considered. They said that wind power would be more efficient, cleaner and provide even more employment opportunities for the local areas in the midlands.

They also said that given that Ireland has half of Europe’s entire bog resource, it would help to protect it in line with rulings from the European Court of Justice.