Measures to combat climate change are almost invariably presented in piecemeal fashion and framed within a wider economic narrative. Consumers are encouraged to adopt an affordable suite of lifestyle alterations, politicians debate a range of punitive measures and incentives aimed at influencing individual and business behaviour, and businesses alter their investments and behaviour while shifting attention to technological innovation that will both help the environment and earn profits.
Ireland’s 2021 National Climate Action Plan follows this pattern. It stresses the importance of cost effectiveness in policy implementation and the obligation to protect competitiveness and maximise employment.
Likewise the narrative of the European Green Deal also largely refers to economic concerns and market-based mechanisms, namely moving away from a fossil fuel economy and pushing the adoption of