Ireland made history on Thursday 12 July by becoming the first country in the world to agree to sell all investments in coal, oil, gas, and peat “as soon as practicable.”

The Irish fossil fuel divestment bill was passed in the lower house of parliament and is expected to pass rapidly through the upper house.  This means the bill could become law before the end of 2018.

Speaking in response to the news, Green Party Leader Eamon Ryan TD said:

“We commend Thomas Pringle TD for bringing this Bill to the Dáil, we congratulate Trócaire and all of the development NGOs and environmental activists who campaigned in favour of it, and we thank all the TDs who voted for it today. It is a historic day for the environmental movement in Ireland.

“The passage of this Bill sends a clear message: that the fossil fuel era is coming to an end. Investing in fossil fuels is unsustainable from an environmental point of view. It is becoming increasingly clear to people that it is unsustainable from a business point of view, an economic point of view, and a social point of view.”

European Green Party co-chairs Monica Frassoni and Reinhard Bütikofer said:

“We congratulate the Irish Greens and all those who have been instrumental in bringing about this momentous achievement to divest from fossil fuels.

“The European Green Party has been campaigning for years to speed up the inevitable process to shift away from from harmful fossil fuels towards clean and sustainable energy.  This will be a significant milestone in that process.

“It is incumbent on our political representatives to act fast to offset the dangers of climate change and we hope this bold move will inspire other European leaders to follow in Ireland’s wake.”