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Blair: Resources for tackling Climate Change must not be scaled back

Alliance Environment spokesperson John Blair has described the decision by DAERA to scrap £1.5 million earmarked for tackling climate change as unacceptable.

Speaking after the latest Committee meeting, the South Antrim MLA said regardless of other plans that may or may not be in place, this was a specific commitment in New Decade New Approach and it’s exclusion without much debate was “unacceptable”.

John said: “whilst lockdown has been an extremely stressful situation for many, a clear positive we can all agree on has been the positive impact on our environment. As we move forward to our new normal this must include steps to protect, enhance and protect the positive changes our environment has witnessed to date.

“In is therefore completely unacceptable that the Minister would move to reduce any monies earmarked to help in the fight against climate change – we need more resources and bodies working on this crucial issue, not less.

“This has not gone unnoticed and I questioned the detail and potential consequences at the meeting. The public expects us to do all we can to fight climate change, so I’ll be raising this issue with the Department and pushing for a key commitment that less funding will not impact the current level of work on the issue.”