Anti-fracking campaigners gathered in Leinster House yesterday evening expecting a bill to ban fracking on the island of Ireland to be passed.
However, it hit a stumbling block and some local politicians feel it was unecessarily delayed after a Dublin TD raised concerns about aspects of the bill.
The discussion on the bill had to be adjourned and was due to come up for discussion this morning but it has now been put off until next Wednesday.
Deputy Richard Boyd-Barrett outlined his support for the bill but said that it could be too restrictive and he wants amendments added to it:
The failure of Boyd-Barrett to withdraw the call for this amendment meant the bill couldn’t be passed.
Sinn Fein too initially had an amendment down but withdrew it.
Martin Kenny told the Dail that extending this to offshore activity is too complicated and could affect conventional gas activity and says that Sinn Fein would like to deal with in a separate piece of legislation at a later date.
However, many anti-fracking campaigners were in the Dail and watching online getting set to celebrate.
Local Leitrim Councillor FF’s Mary Bohan says it’s unfortunate that the issue was not dealt with.
But she says it’s hopes it will finally be passed next week and that Ireland will lead the way on this issue which even though comes on the back of this bill from Sligo Leitrim TD Tony McLoughlin has come about following years of work by campaigners in counties like Leitrim: