Hydrogen Ireland today welcomed the news that Northern Ireland’s first ever piece of climate legislation will be introduced to the assembly today.
The bill, drafted by academics and environmentalists, proposes a net zero target of 2045.
It also suggests measures to address water quality and biodiversity loss.
It will begin its journey through the legislative process ahead of a departmental climate bill which is expected to propose a different outcome.
That bill is still being worked up by Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs and suggests at least an 82% cut in Northern Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
Until now, Northern Ireland has been the only part of the UK without its own climate legislation, though it is contributing to wider UK reduction targets.
The legislation being introduced today was drafted by an organisation called Climate Coalition NI and is being taken forward as a private members bill in the name of Green Party leader Clare Bailey.
It has the backing of Sinn Féin, the Ulster Unionists, Alliance, the SDLP along with a number of independents – only the DUP has not signed up.
That means it should have the necessary political support to facilitate its passage through the various stages.
Last year the government’s climate advisory body, the Committee on Climate Change, suggested an 82% reduction by 2050 would be an equitable contribution for Northern Ireland to the UK’s net zero ambition.