Water and Sewerage Schemes Provision

Questions (349)

Patrick O'Donovan

Question:

349. Deputy Patrick O'Donovan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he has considered unbundling the development of proposed waste water treatment plants in County Limerick with a view to trying to develop them on an individual basis. [11310/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The Water Services Investment Programme 2010 – 2013 provides for the development of a comprehensive range of new water services infrastructure in County Limerick. The Programme consists of contracts under construction and to commence to the value of some €29 million in the county during the period of the Programme including schemes or contracts required to meet EPA licensing or certification requirements.

In total there are eight sewerage schemes/contracts in County Limerick included in the Programme either to start construction during the lifetime of the Programme or advance through planning. Works are ongoing in respect of three of these contracts namely:

- Kilmallock Sewerage – Wastewater Treatment Plant;

- Patrickswell Sewerage Scheme – Networks contract; and

- Mungret Sewerage Scheme – Networks contract.

The remaining schemes/contracts are at different stages of planning. Each of these schemes/contracts are standalone projects and there are no bundled schemes included in the Programme for County Limerick.

Motor Tax Collection

Questions (350)

Simon Harris

Question:

350. Deputy Simon Harris asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if there is any mechanism in place for a person whose motor tax lapsed whilst they were in hospital for an extended period of time and who now wants to re-tax the car excluding the months that they were in hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11327/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

There is an administrative arrangement in place whereby the owner of a vehicle may be exempted from motor tax for any full month or months during which the vehicle has not been in use in a public place. The relevant form for completion is RF100A which is available for download from the Department’s website www.environ.ie, from any motor tax office, and which should also be available from any Garda station.

Election Management System

Questions (351)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

351. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government further to Parliamentary Questions Nos. 431 of 20 November 2012 and 691 of 6 November 2012, if he will provide the total number of the persons employed in the following roles in the Children's Referendum who were immediately previously unemployed or on the live register, Special Presiding Officers, Presiding Officers, Supervisory Presiding Officers and Area Inspectors, Poll Clerks, Count Supervisors, Count Calculators and Counters. [11343/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

Based on information provided to my Department by Returning Officers for 35 out of 43 constituencies, the total number of staff employed at the referendum in November 2012 was 11,654, of which 28.6% were unemployed. The details for the 35 constituencies are set out in the following table.

Positions

Total number of

staff employed

Number of ‘unemployed’

persons employed

‘unemployed’

persons as a

% of the total

Poll Clerks

4,524

1,780

39.35

Presiding Officers

4,527

1,120

24.74

Supervisory Presiding Officers

352

33

9.38

Special Presiding Officers

124

10

8.06

Emergency Presiding Officers

23

3

13.04

Count Supervisor

186

14

7.53

Calculator

110

6

5.45

Counter

1,603

321

20.02

Other Staff

205

41

20.00

Total

11,654

 

3,328

 

28.56

Dormant Accounts Fund Grants

Questions (352)

Martin Ferris

Question:

352. Deputy Martin Ferris asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he will make funding available from dormant accounts for the purchase of a premises for the Tralee branch of the Irish Red Cross, County Kerry. [11414/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The process in place with regard to support from the Dormant Accounts Fund provides for consideration of applications received on foot of advertised measures.  The last such measure under my Department was advertised in 2009 and there are currently no dormant accounts measures open for application.

Water Services Provision

Questions (353, 357)

Michelle Mulherin

Question:

353. Deputy Michelle Mulherin asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the safeguards in place to ensure that there is an equitable investment of capital by Irish Water into rural areas in order to avoid the overriding consideration being return on investment for the company; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11441/13]

View answer

Michelle Mulherin

Question:

357. Deputy Michelle Mulherin asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the input local authorities will have in water services capital investment works for their areas in the future under Irish Water; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11486/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 353 and 357 together.

The Water Sector Reform Implementation Strategy, which is published on my Department’s website, is focused on ensuring that appropriate policy and legal frameworks are put in place for Irish Water and the water sector. A key objective of the Government in establishing Irish Water is to provide a mechanism to finance necessary capital investment in the sector, and accelerate the delivery of such investment. Irish Water will be working in partnership with local authorities to achieve its aims. It is envisaged that in developing investment plans for public water services, Irish Water will take account of the requirements flowing from the programmes of measures in River Basin Management Plans, and the need to support economic and regional development. The relationship between Irish Water and local authorities in the water services investment planning process and in relation to local economic development will be addressed under the Implementation Strategy. These are matters which will be developed as part of the comprehensive legislation planned for later this year and will be covered in related guidelines where required.

Water Services Funding

Question No. 355 answered with Question No. 346.

Questions (354)

Michelle Mulherin

Question:

354. Deputy Michelle Mulherin asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the current average cost of production of a cubic litre of water by local authorities for domestic and commercial consumption; the current revenue and capital cost to the State for the provision of domestic water supply and treatment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11442/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The cost of treating water supplies is a matter for each individual local authority and information on the costs for domestic consumption is not available in my Department. Local authorities are required to recover the cost of providing water services from the non-domestic sector. Full details of local authority current and capital expenditure on water services is outlined in the Local Government Annual Financial Statement, which is published each year. Expenditure is funded through a combination of Exchequer grants, general purpose grants from the Local Government Fund, and the local authorities’ own resources. Over €6 billion in exchequer resources has been invested in Water Services Capital Infrastructure since the early 1990s with some €2.4 billion or 36% of the overall total related to water investment and water conservation. The exchequer allocation for 2013 is some €329m.

Question No. 355 answered with Question No. 346.

Appointments to State Boards

Question No. 357 answered with Question No. 353.

Questions (356)

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

356. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the number of appointments he has made from March 2011 to January 2013 to State boards; in the case of each appointment, the number of appointments that were made to members of the general public who submitted a curriculum vitae for the appointment; the number of direct appointments he made; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11474/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

Up to 31 December 2012, the latest date for which information is available, the position is as follows:

Agency / Board

Name of Appointee

Date of Appointment

An Bord Pleanála

Dr. Mary Kelly (Chairperson)

29/08/2011

An Bord Pleanála

Mr. Conall Boland (Deputy Chairperson)

01/01/2012

An Bord Pleanála

Ms. Mary MacMahon   

27/11/2011

An Bord Pleanála

Mr. Michael Leahy

14/05/2012

An Bord Pleanála

Mr. Nicholas Mulcahy

21/05/2012

An Bord Pleanála

Mr. Gabriel Dennison

21/05/2012

An Bord Pleanála

Mr. Paddy Keogh

21/05/2012

Building Regulation Advisory Board

Mr. Aidan O'Connor (Departmental representative)

19/04/2011

Building Regulation Advisory Board

Mr. Paul Kelly

19/04/2011

Building Regulation Advisory Board

Mr. Conor Taaffe

16/06/2011

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Dr. Niamh Brennan

01/05/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Niall Coveney

01/05/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Dónall Curtin

01/05/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Ms. Yvonne Farrell

01/05/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Mark Griffin (Departmental Representative)

01/05/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Brendan Malone

01/05/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Ms. Catherine Mullarkey

01/05/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. John Tierney (Chairperson)

01/06/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Gerry Grimes

01/06/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Dr. Philip Matthews

01/06/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Ms. Lucy McCaffery

01/06/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Charlie Murphy

01/06/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Ms. Imelda Reynolds

01/06/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Michael Stubbs

01/06/2012

Dublin Docklands Development Authority*

Mr. Frank Walsh

01/06/2012

Environmental Protection Agency

Ms. Laura Burke (Director General)

08/11/2011

Environmental Protection Agency

Mr. Dara Lynott

12/07/2012

Environmental Protection Agency

Mr. Gerard O'Leary

08/05/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Dr. Michelle Norris (Chairperson)

22/02/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Mr. John Hogan (Department of Finance nominee)

22/02/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Mr. Phillip Nugent (Departmental representative)

22/02/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Ms. Jackie Maguire (CCMA Representative)

13/03/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Mr. Colm Brophy

13/03/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Mr. Michael Murray

13/03/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Mr. Padraic Cafferty

21/03/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Dr. Mary Lee Rhodes

21/03/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Mr. Jim Miley

30/04/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Ms. Michelle Murphy Lawless

30/04/2012

Housing Finance Agency

Mr. Gerry Leahy

30/04/2012

Irish Water Safety

Ms. Breda Collins (Chairperson)

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. John Considine

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Michael Cuddihy

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Tom Doyle

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Brendan McGrath

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Paul Murphy

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Seamus O'Neill

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Martin O'Sullivan

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Ms. Anne Ryan

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Ms. Lola O'Sullivan

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Christy McDonagh

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Tim O'Sullivan

(Departmental representative)

21/11/2011

Irish Water Safety

Mr. Odran Reid

27/06/2012

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Mr. Rich Howlin

(Chairperson)

21/12/2011

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Mr. Eddie Lewis

(Departmental representative)

21/12/2011

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Ms. Marie McLaughlin

(Department of Public

Expenditure & Reform Representative)

21/12/2011

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Mr. Peter Carey County

Manager Laois County Council

21/12/2011

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Ms. Ann McGuinness

21/12/2011

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Mr . Dermot Nolan

(Department of Public

Expenditure & Reform Representative)

21/12/2012

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Mr . John O Connor

21/12/2012

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Mr . Donal McManus

21/12/2012

Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency

Mr . Michael Layde

(Departmental representative)

01/08/2012

Local Government Computer Services Board

Mr. Eddie Breen (Chairperson)

County Manager Wexford County Council

01/01/2012

Local Government Computer Services Board

Mr. Michael Malone County

Manager Kildare County Council

01/11/2011

Local Government Computer Services Board

Mr. Barry Quinlan

(Departmental representative)

23/11/2011

Local Government Computer Services Board

Mr. Enda Holland (Department of

Public Expenditure & Reform Representative)

22/02/2012

Local Government Management Services Board

Mr. Eddie Breen (Chairperson)

County Manager Wexford County Council

01/01/2012

Local Government Management Services Board

Mr. Donal Enright

(Departmental representative)

01/11/2011

Local Government Management Services Board

Mr. Michael Malone County

Manager Kildare County Council

01/11/2011

Local Government Management Services Board

Mr. Barry Quinlan

(Departmental representative)

23/11/2011

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Barry Quinlan

(Departmental representative)

24/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Donal Enright

(Departmental representative)

24/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Paul McDonald

(Departmental representative)

24/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Eddie Breen (Chairperson)

County Manager Wexford County Council

20/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Peter Carey County Manager

Laois County Council

20/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Hubert Kearns County Manager

Sligo County Council

20/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Michael Malone County Manager

Kildare County Council

20/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Eddie Sheehy County Manager

Wicklow County Council

20/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. John Tierney City Manager

Dublin City Council

20/09/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Martin Riordan

Cork County Manager

18/10/2012

Local Government Management Agency**

Mr. Michael Walsh

Waterford City manager

18/10/2012

National Traveller Accommodation Consultative Committee

Mr. Tom Coughlan

County Manager Clare

County Council

21/12/2011

National Traveller Accommodation Consultative Committee

Ms. Colette Spears

26/06/2012

National Traveller Accommodation Consultative Committee

Mr Jim Ganley

(Departmental representative)

31/03/2012

Private Residential Tenancies Board

Mr. Tim Ryan

17/02/2012

Private Residential Tenancies Board

Ms. Tricia Sheehy Skeffington

17/02/2012

Private Residential Tenancies Board

Ms. Paula O’Reilly

(Departmental representative)

22/03/2012

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Professor William Reville

(Chairperson)

16/01/2012

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Dr. Paraic James

(public servant)

16/01/2012

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Dr. Maurice Fitzgerald

(Dental Council)

19/10/2011

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Dr. Patricia Cunningham

(public servant)

20/02/2012

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Mr. John O'Dea

30/11/2012

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Ms. Darina Muckian

30/11/2012

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Ms. Adi Roche

30/11/2012

 

Radiological Protection Institute Ireland

Dr. Patrick Gilligan

30/11/2012

* The board of the Dublin Docklands Development Authority was reappointed from 1 May 2012 and replaced by a new board from 1 June 2012 which will continue in place until 31 December 2013.

** The Local Government Management Agency was established on 1 August 2012 and replaces the Local Government Computer Services Board and the Local Government Management Services Board.

A notice was placed on my Department’s website on 19 July, 2011 seeking expressions of interest, from suitably qualified and experienced persons, for consideration as members or chairpersons of the boards of state bodies under the aegis of my Department. The notice is updated regularly as specific vacancies arise.

Vacancies on the boards of other bodies under my Department’s aegis will be notified on the website as they arise. However, expressions of interest can be made at any time and will be kept on file in my Department for consideration as vacancies occur.

All appointments are made in accordance with the appropriate legislation governing appointments to each body. In considering applications due regard is also had to Government policy regarding gender balance on State Boards.

A number of different statutory processes are involved in appointments to State boards. In some cases statutory selection procedures must be followed or nominations must be sought from independent nominating panels before appointments are made by the Government or by the Minister. In a number of situations, only some appointments to the body concerned are made by the Minister, or appointments are made with the consent of another Minister.

The Boards of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and An Bord Pleanala are executive in nature and members are employed on a full time salaried basis.

Appointments are made taking into account the requirement of the position and the qualifications, experience and expertise of the potential candidates.

The following members were appointed to the Board of Pobal, a not-for-profit company under the aegis of my Department, by Government:

- Mr. Séamus Boland (Chair)

- Mr. Tommy Maguire

- Mr. Liam Keane

- Ms. Siobhan McLoughlin

- Ms. Jennifer McHugh

- Ms. Mari Hurley

- Mr. William Cotter

- Mr. Gerald Quain

- Cllr. John Kelleher

- Ms. Ann Costello

Article 3 of the Articles of Association of Pobal requires the Minister to consider nominations received from a list of stakeholders and the Social Partners defined by Government in 2005. The list comprises:

- National Social Partners - Social Partners party to the Sustaining Progress Agreement; and

- Stakeholders - Area and Community Partnership, County Childcare Committees, and County and City Managers Association.

A consultation process was conducted and 22 nominations received from the Stakeholders and the National Social Partners were considered for purposes of the Government appointments to the vacant positions on the board.

Question No. 357 answered with Question No. 353.

Air Pollution

Questions (358)

Joe McHugh

Question:

358. Deputy Joe McHugh asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government further to Parliamentary Question No. 496 of 19 February 2013, if affected vendors will be able to sell smokey coal to customers who live outside the restricted area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11537/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The Air Pollution Act (Marketing, Sale, Distribution and Burning of Specified Fuels) Regulations 2012 (S.I. No. 326 of 2012) provide for a ban on the marketing, sale distribution and burning of bituminous fuel inside specified ban areas. The main legislative provisions of the Regulations that apply inside such ban areas include:

- a ban on the marketing, sale and distribution of bituminous fuel;

- a requirement to sell solid fuel in sealed bags with a printed notice;

- a requirement to maintain a register, if storing bituminous fuel for the purpose of placing on the market or on sale at a separate location outside the ban area;

- transportation of bituminous fuel in minimum quantities of 3 metric tonnes in Dublin or 1 tonne inside other ban areas; and

- retention of records by drivers of vehicles transporting bituminous fuel, detailing the type of fuel on board, who supplied it and where it is being transported to.

The sale of prohibited fuels within the ban area is strictly forbidden and there are no circumstances that allow for exceptions. The Regulations do not permit sales from a premises inside a ban area to customers who claim to live outside the ban area. Allowing for such a practice would completely undermine the effectiveness of the Regulations and enforcement efforts. The provisions allowing for storage and transport of bituminous fuel inside ban areas facilitate the upstream movement of product within the supply chain. A person or body storing bituminous fuel inside a ban area may only place such fuel on the market, provided that the point of sale to the end user (i.e. where the product is exchanged and paid for) is at a location outside the ban area.

My Department issued a circular letter to all local authorities on 14 February 2013 in respect of consistent implementation of the Regulations. The circular advised local authorities on the conditions applying to storage and transport of bituminous fuel inside ban areas and that these conditions do not permit retail sales of bituminous fuel to residential customers from premises inside the ban areas.

Water and Sewerage Schemes Provision

Questions (359)

Jim Daly

Question:

359. Deputy Jim Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the person responsible for public health issues in relation to sewerage treatment infrastructure previously owned by a private individual or entity that is now abandoned; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11541/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

Neither my Department, nor local authorities, have responsibility for, or a role to play in, the management, maintenance or operation of privately owned wastewater treatment facilities.

Arts Funding

Questions (360)

Seán Ó Fearghaíl

Question:

360. Deputy Seán Ó Fearghaíl asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the number of applications made under the percent for arts scheme from each local authority in each of the past five years, together with the details of the schemes approved or refused. [11573/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

It is a matter for each commissioning body, including local authorities, to develop, procure and manage any projects under the Per Cent For Art scheme. My Department does not have comprehensive data on projects which have incorporated an artistic feature under this scheme. General National Guidelines on the Per Cent For Art Scheme were issued by the then Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism in December 2004. These guidelines recommend that each commissioning body maintain a database of all projects funded under the scheme.

Services for People with Disabilities

Questions (361)

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

361. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the position regarding alarms in respect of persons with a disability (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11579/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The aim of the Seniors Alert Scheme is to support independent living for those over 65 who live alone or who live with a person who is also over 65 years of age and of limited financial means. A key element of the Scheme is the provision of funding for a socially monitored alarm which supports this independence. Funding is provided to persons with a disability provided they meet the other criteria, which include age and limited financial means.

Water Charges Introduction

Questions (362)

Brendan Griffin

Question:

362. Deputy Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government further to Parliamentary Question No. 169 of 20 February 2013, if group water schemes, whose source or supply of water is council water, will be liable for water metering charges; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11586/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The Government has decided that Irish Water, a new State-owned water company to be established as an independent subsidiary within the Bord Gáis Éireann Group, will be responsible for the domestic water metering programme and for the collection of water charges from households. The water metering programme will cover households connected to a public water supply. Households in group schemes will not be metered under the programme. Some group water schemes currently purchase water from water services authorities. In such cases the distribution network remains under the control of the group scheme. It is not intended that there will be any change to this arrangement when Irish Water assumes the responsibilities of the existing 34 water service authorities.

Foreshore Licence Applications

Questions (363)

Charlie McConalogue

Question:

363. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the time-frame it takes for his Department to grant a foreshore licence after the application is received; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11643/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

Proposals for activity and development on the foreshore vary greatly in terms of their nature, scale and complexity and the time required to determine applications varies accordingly. Changes introduced since the transfer of the function to my Department have impacted on the determination times. Short-term administrative measures which have been developed include:

- Regulations putting a time limit on consultations with prescribed bodies (8 weeks for EIA cases and 4 weeks for non-EIA cases).

- A scheme of prioritisation for all foreshore applications; and

- Development of standard operating procedures incorporating significant streamlining measures.

My Department is currently working on a Bill to modernise the foreshore consent process and integrate it within the planning system.  A public consultation on this recently concluded and I intend to publish the legislation later this year.

Air Pollution

Questions (364)

Martin Ferris

Question:

364. Deputy Martin Ferris asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the position regarding the banning of smoky coal and its likely impact on fuel poverty; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11700/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The ban on the marketing, sale and distribution of bituminous fuel (or ‘smoky coal ban’ as it is commonly known) was first introduced in Dublin in 1990 in response to severe episodes of winter smog that resulted from the widespread use of smoky coal for residential heating.  Air quality monitoring carried out by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) shows that the ban proved very effective in reducing particulate matter and sulphur dioxide levels in Dublin. The ban was subsequently extended to other urban areas and currently applies in twenty cities and towns.

On 31 August 2012, following a public consultation process, I gave effect to new consolidating solid fuel regulations, the Air Pollution Act (Marketing, Sale, Distribution and Burning of Specified Fuels) Regulations 2012.  Some improved and updated provisions were introduced that will help to ensure that the Regulations remain fit for purpose in safeguarding air quality by limiting harmful emissions of air pollutants arising from the use of residential fuels.  These are as follows:

- most existing smoky coal ban area boundaries were revised to take recent urban development into account;

- seven new  towns are being added to the ban from May 2013 - Greystones, Letterkenny, Mullingar, Navan, Newbridge, Portlaoise and Wicklow Town; and

- a prohibition on the burning of bituminous fuel was provided for to complement the established ban on its marketing, sale and distribution. 

In addition to the recent regulatory improvements, a closer alignment of solid fuel policy and legislation on an all-island basis would aid enforcement, protect air quality standards and allow the benefits derived from the ban to potentially be further extended. This is an issue that I am discussing further with my Northern Ireland counterpart through engagement under the North South Ministerial Council.

Products offered for sale in breach of the Regulations may often be of inferior quality, creating more pollution within a person’s home and in their community. The burning of solid fuel for residential heating makes a disproportionate contribution to air pollution, which generally occurs within communities where exposure, including to vulnerable groups, can be highest. In addition to gas and oil, there is a wide range of modern smokeless coals and other products available that are cleaner, easy to burn, and which generally provide more energy per bag and more consistent heat over a longer period with both consumer and environmental benefits.

The Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources publication, Warmer Homes: Strategy for Affordable Energy in Ireland, recognises that there is a greater incidence of energy poverty in those households reliant on solid fuel. Accordingly, the Warmer Homes programme aims to alleviate energy poverty by funding social enterprises to upgrade insulation in low-income households with benefits for air quality, climate policy and the social economy, as well as cost savings to the consumer as a result of the more efficient use of fuel.

Tribunals of Inquiry Recommendations

Questions (365)

Patrick Nulty

Question:

365. Deputy Patrick Nulty asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the steps that he has taken to implement the recommendations of the Moriarty Tribunal since its publication nearly two years ago; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11039/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

Insofar as the report of the Moriarty Tribunal made recommendations concerning the future operation of tribunals of inquiry, many of these recommendations are anticipated by the Tribunals of Inquiry Bill 2005 which awaits Report Stage debate in the Dáil. Other recommendations are the subject of consultation with the Attorney General and other relevant Departments. With regard to the examination of the report of the Moriarty Tribunal by An Garda Síochána, I am advised by the Garda authorities that the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions has been sought on the findings of that examination, with a view to determining whether or not a full Garda investigation should now be commenced.