Cllr Malcolm Noonan has been appointed as the Green Party spokesman on the environment, community and local government – shadowing Environment Minister Phil Hogan.
His appointment was made on Sunday at the Green Party’s celebration of 30 years in existence.
“It’s a big ask. We are just a voluntary organisation now,” Cllr Noonan said, but he has several ideas in mind for the role.
“My main area will be to critique the minister and follow the implementation of policy in the Department of the Environment, particularly in relation to changes in waste policy,” he said.
He will also be concerned with local government reform and says he will advocate for County Development Boards to be strengthened. He is calling for the shelved Climate Bill to be put back on the agenda and will also be emphasising the effects that retail planning has on regional towns.
“The main thing will be constructive criticism of government policy, perhaps even being able to inform the political process,” Cllr Noonan said. “The Greens don’t believe that this government is serious about a commitment towards sustainability and the protection of rural communities.”