Ireland is at "serious risk" of failing to reach its carbon targets by 2030, according to the latest report from the Climate Change Advisory Council (CCAC).
In its annual review for 2023, published this morning, the independent advisory body warns that Ireland "will not meet the targets" set in the first (2021 to 2025) and second (2026 to 2030) carbon budget periods without "urgent action".
The CCAC warns that Ireland must act "immediately" to ensure emissions begin to fall "much more rapidly".
The council says "key actions need to be implemented" to prevent "longer-term damage and increased costs to society and the economy".
It calls on the Government to ensure there is enough funding and planning in place to ensure the country can take the actions that are needed at scale and speed.
On Newstalk Breakfast, CCAC Chair Marie Donnelly said the "small reduction" in emissions last year was positive, but "the rate and the scale" of the reduction was "totally inadequate".
"We have policies in place, but they're delayed; they're not happening fast enough, and they're not deep enough," she said.
Ms Donnelly said Ireland is now at "serious risk" of not achieving its carbon targets.
"What we're basically saying to Government is you have got to put the foot to the floor and hit the accelerator, we need a much deeper, much faster implementation of policies to reduce our emissions across all of the sectors," she said.
The report highlights the lack of targets in the land sector, which "introduces doubt across all the sectors", according to Ms Donnelly.
"We still haven't got that and we need it urgently," she said.
Ms Donnelly said Government need to approach climate action in a "planned and organised way" to "not leave anybody behind on this journey".
"We cannot blame individuals within society or groups within society," she said, "This is a collective problem."
"We all have to deal with it and we all have to take the measures, and we need to take those measures right now."
Ms Donnelly said farmers often feel they are the sole focus of climate criticism.
"The farmers that I know want to do the right thing," she said.
"They're keen to do the right thing, but they have been given very mixed messages over time."
In order to support farmers to make their practices more climate-friendly, Ms Donnelly said "better supports" need to be in place.
"We as individuals can help farmers by, for example, buying their products locally, which are locally produced and organic products," she said.
"More than that, there are new farming methodologies that have now been proven by Teagasc – our research body here in Ireland – greener fertilisers, feed additives for dairy cattle, the way the slurry is sprayed.
"The latest figures from Teagasc show a series of pathways that allow agriculture to achieve its target by 2030.
"Let's get it happening, let's get it out there, and let's get the uptake happening sufficiently across all of the farming community."