How Ireland is implementing its decarbonisation agenda
In November 2021, the Government of Ireland launched "Ireland's National Climate Action Plan" – a detailed plan for taking decisive action to achieve a 51% reduction in overall greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, setting Ireland on a path to reach net-zero emissions by no later than 2050. These commitments position Ireland as having among the most ambitious national decarbonisation plans in the world.
The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Leo Varadkar, brought a keen focus on the vital role that businesses have in decarbonising Industry in Ireland. IDA Ireland is the government agency responsible for foreign direct investment in Ireland, partnering with 1,700+ multinational clients and employing almost 300,000 people across Ireland. IDA supports these companies - as leaders in their industries - to decarbonise their businesses, make necessary capital investment, up-skill their teams in new green technologies, and invest in Research and Development to solve industry decarbonisation challenges.
Planning for sustainable growth
IDA Ireland’s strategy, Driving Recovery and Sustainable Growth , sets out five pillars addressing Ireland’s ambition for a successful and sustainable economy. This strategy was developed to align with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and ensure Ireland greatly contributes to stop the worldwide climate crisis.
Sustainability is an essential strategic pillar, with clear objectives to provide green solutions to help achieve the National Climate Action Plan. This pillar sees a focus on decarbonisation in existing multinationals, a sustainable approach in IDA’s own activity, and a need for collaboration across government to meet goals.
Collaboration and partnership
Collaborating with partners across the enterprise, policy, and stakeholder groups is a core value for IDA Ireland, where work with Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), the Environmental Protection Agency, Enterprise Ireland, and various government departments aligns to deliver decarbonisation actions. This involves sharing client insights on environmental impact coupled with investment in talent to support best practice initiatives.
Leveraging the wealth of expert knowledge found in Ireland and across the EU has proven vital to ensure a collective national effort towards a net-zero future.
IDA Ireland believes it must lead from the front and take on the same challenges to decarbonise as each of its 1,700 clients.
IDA has clear goals to improve energy efficiency. These goals include setting benchmarks to monitor progress including a target of a 25% improvement by 2024 and 50% by 2030. A decarbonisation plan may initially appear daunting, however, breaking it down into smaller yet measurable goals help create stepping stones on the pathway to deliver on the national ambition.
IDA has been tactical in this area with strong progress and consistent results. For example, according to an SEAI report, IDA Ireland has delivered a 53.6% improvement in energy efficiency recorded in 2018 relative to 2009 baseline levels. Much of this success has been achieved through small but incremental change, with long-term benefits.
Ensuring an integrated approach to sustainable investment, IDA Ireland continues to plan for green and sustainable improvements in our Business and Technology Parks, and at our utility intensive, strategic sites throughout Ireland. Supporting talent development in each location includes impactful actions such as connecting renewable energy sources and public transport links to business parks, biodiversity and sustainable construction. The connected approach to growth clearly aligns with the future of industry, and quality of life for talent and community stakeholders throughout Ireland.
As an ambassador for sustainable reputation within Ireland, and, internationally, among an influential group of first class investors around the world, IDA Ireland ensures that its delivery of national policy targets are aligned with the interests of its key stakeholders to foster green growth as part of core principles.