157 young people have urged TDs and other adults to take on board their recommendations and ideas on helping to tackle climate crisis.
The children and teenagers - aged between 10 and 17 - gathered in the Dáil chamber today as part of the youth assembly on climate.
In the sitting overseen by Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó Fearghaíl, the assembly put forward a range of ideas - with members saying that the response to the crisis so far hasn't been good enough.
One of those participating - 17-year-old Conal O'Boyle from Donegal - argued: "Although it is a proud moment for all of us here today, I personally feel it's a shame we need be here in the first place.
"The fact that we are sitting in their seats today should serve as a massive embarrassment to them, as they have embarrassed the country on a national level when it comes to climate action."
11-year-old Katelyn Culleton from Ballinasloe in Galway, meanwhile, said climate change is a "worldwide threat" - and highlighted the need to act nationally and globally before it is too late.
"We call on you to listen"
This afternoon, the youth assembly issued 10 recommendations - ranging from a ban on imports of fracked gas to an emissions tax on large companies.
In a statement explaining their recommendations, the group said: "We put forward our recommendations for action to stop climate breakdown. We are NOT experts. In our recommendations we offer ideas but we do NOT have answers.
"It is a starting point for adults and particularly for those elected to protect and progress our society. We call on you to listen to the science, to take on board our Recommendations and to work on our behalf to ensure that we - and you - have a future.”
The Ceann Comhairle said the young people have "real proposals" that can make a difference, adding: "The solution-based approach of our young people and the pragmatic manner in which they communicated their knowledge of the climate challenges we face gives me great hope for the future.”
You can see the full list of the 10 recommendations below:
- From your corner store to your supermarket, we call on the House to incentivise and obligate the installation of glass doors on open refrigerators.
- For Ireland to ban the importation of fracked gas and invest solely in renewables.
- Implementing measures that will allow that Irish goods be both eco-sustainable and affordable in todays’ Irish Market.
- Implement a tiered tax on emissions from large companies including those under capital Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS). This tax must be increased every year while threshold decreases, shifting the burden from individuals to corporations.
- Investment in industrial hemp facilities to provide a viable, sustainable and alternative land use for farmers as well as employment in rural Ireland.
- A labeling and pricing system showing the climate impact of food products based on criteria such as impact of packaging and distance traveled.
- Ireland to outlaw acts of ecocide – the widespread and systematic loss of ecosystems, including climate and cultural damage.
- Protect existing forests and make compulsory that at least 10% of all land owned for agricultural uses is dedicated to forestry.
- A targeted nationwide information campaign to educate the population about the climate crisis regarding the causes, the effects and the solutions.
- Mandatory “sustainability” education from primary level to the workplace including a new compulsory Junior Cycle and optional Leaving Certificate subject.