Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Questions (601, 602)

Micheál Martin

Question:

601. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he cleared the smoky coal ban through the technical regulation information system, TRIS, process; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26491/19]

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Micheál Martin

Question:

602. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the detail of each part of the process of consultation and discussion with the EU on the smoky coal ban in chronological order; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26493/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Communications)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 601 and 602 together.

My Department has had a number of engagements with the European Commission about aspects of Ireland's air quality policy, including the proposed national extension of the smoky coal ban. A Clean Air Dialogue was held between Ireland and the Commission in March 2017, to promote actions to improve air quality and contribute to Ireland's implementation of EU clean air legislation. The productive dialogue included discussion of the proposed national ban, and is summarised in shared conclusions which can be found at the following address: www.dccae.gov.ie/documents/CAD%20conclusions%20%20Final.pdf.

Under Directive (EU) 2015/1535, the European Commission operates the Technical Regulation Information System, or TRIS. This system is a tool for information, prevention and dialogue in the field of technical regulations on products and information society services. It is intended to help anticipate and prevent the creation of barriers to trade.

Draft regulations to give effect to the proposed ban were uploaded by my Department to the TRIS system in August 2017, along with a policy analysis statement. No comments or submissions were received from the Commission or from any Member State relating to the draft regulations. The Asthma Society of Ireland made a submission which supported the regulations.

Question No. 603 answered with Question No. 596.