183. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the way in which his Department plans to spend the additional €35 million allocated in budget 2018 to energy efficiency. (Question 44323/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Energy Efficiency)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): Using less energy, and using it more efficiently, is the most cost effective and accessible way for us all to take action on climate change.   
Overall in 2018, at least €117m in capital and current funding will be invested in energy efficiency programmes. This will save over 120,000 tonnes in carbon emissions every year. It will support around 3,500 jobs, and reduce our overall dependence on imported fossil ...

184. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the deadline by which the renewable heat incentive scheme will be launched. (Question 44324/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Renewable Heat Incentive)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): The proposed Renewable Heat Incentive addresses key objectives  set out in the National Mitigation Plan, the Energy White Paper and the Programme for Government. The development of the scheme has involved detailed economic analysis, extensive engagement with industry and two public consultations.
In Budget 2018, €7m was allocated for the proposed Renewable Heat Incentive. I intend to seek Government approval to ...

185. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the amount of funding that his Department plans to allocate to the trading online voucher scheme in 2018. (Question 44325/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Trading Online Voucher Scheme)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 185 and 194 together.
The Trading Online Voucher Scheme is a demand-led scheme which aims to deliver 1,000 businesses trading online each year with minor fluctuations in throughput expected in a demand-led scheme. The scheme has the flexibility to approve applications in excess of the target, should the demand exist.
The following table gives a breakdown on an annual basis of the...

186. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the amount of additional funding that has been provided to the EPA in budget 2018; and the breakdown of this funding between air quality monitoring, noise monitoring and climate change research. (Question 44326/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Environmental Protection Agency Funding)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): The indicative overall Budget 2018 allocation for the EPA is €34.8m, a significant increase on the 2017 allocation of €31.5m.
The indicative allocation for 2018 is broken down into €21.3m. current and €13.5m. capital, and is subject to final agreement with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform in the context of the Revised Estimates Volume (REV) later this year.
The new Ambient Air Quality Monitoring P...

187. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the amount of new funding that will be allocated to waste prevention and recycling in 2018; the programmes that this funding will support; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44327/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Waste Management)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I recently announced that €1.6 million was allocated as part of Budget 2018 to support an on-going waste campaign to assist householders in managing their waste.  
The Regional Waste Management Planning Offices commenced a programme of education and awareness funded by my  Department earlier this year with radio advertisements encouraging the use of the brown bin and focusing on food waste prevention. This wa...

194. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the number of small businesses supported by the trading online voucher scheme has declined in recent years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44498/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Trading Online Voucher Scheme)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 185 and 194 together.
The Trading Online Voucher Scheme is a demand-led scheme which aims to deliver 1,000 businesses trading online each year with minor fluctuations in throughput expected in a demand-led scheme. The scheme has the flexibility to approve applications in excess of the target, should the demand exist.
The following table gives a breakdown on an annual basis of the...

195. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his plans regarding the television licence fee collection system; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44499/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Television Licence Fee Collection)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I obtained Government approval earlier this year to draft a number of legislative amendments to the Broadcasting Act, 2009, including amendments to allow for the tendering of TV Licence fee collection.  As the Deputy is aware, the proposed amendments are currently under Pre-Legislative Scrutiny by the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Communications, Climate Action & Environment and I await a report from the Committ...

196. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the status of the review of the impact of opt out advertising on the broadcasting sector. (Question 44500/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Broadcast Advertising Standards Regulation)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): The EU regulatory framework for broadcasting as set out in the Audio-visual Media Services Directive is currently undergoing review.  To support its work in this area, my Department engaged consultancy services in October 2016 to review the impact of ‘opt-out’ advertising on the Irish broadcasting sector.
I am currently considering the report’s recommendations and intend to publish the report on my Department’s ...

197. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the amount of RES-E capacity that has been installed to date in 2017. (Question 44501/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Renewable Energy Generation)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I understand that as of September 2017, the total amount of renewable generation connected to the grid was 3,400 MW approximately of which 3,080 MW was wind generation. A breakdown of the other renewable technologies at that date is not available, but the majority (212 MW) was hydro. It is estimated that a total of between 3,900 MW and 4,300 MW of onshore wind generation capacity will be required to allow Irelan...

198. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the number of homes that have been covered by energy efficiency measures since 2010, in tabular form. (Question 44502/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Energy Schemes Data)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): In total, over 293,300 homes have received state supported energy efficiency upgrades since 2010. These upgrades were provided through the Better Energy Programme which is administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) with funding from my Department. The Better Energy Programme consists of the Better Energy Homes Scheme, Better Energy Warmer Homes Scheme, and Better Energy Communities Scheme...

199. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the number of inspections of recreational anglers for licences that have taken place each year since 2010, in tabular form. (Question 44503/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Angling Sector)

Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Seán Kyne): I propose to take Questions Nos. 199 and 201 together. 
The information requested is as follows:
 Inspections 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017B No of Iicence inspections of recreational anglers 4,986A 18,657 14,461 17,042 16,499 8,874 No of other angling Inspections 5,302A 14,985 16,795 17,254 19,511 7,823 
A. Details for 6 months as reporting metric was commenced mid...

200. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the number of prosecutions of inland fisheries related offences that have taken place to date in 2017. (Question 44504/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Inland Fisheries Regulation)

Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Seán Kyne): I have been informed by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) that the number of prosecutions for fisheries related offences to date in 2017 is fourteen.
I am also advised by IFI that a significant number of cases are under consideration following activity during recent months.
The Inland Fisheries (Amendment) Act 2017 (No. 16 of 2017) came into operation on 11 July 2017 and confers an explicit pow...

201. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the number of fixed charge notices that were issued in respect of inland fisheries offences in each year since 2010, in tabular form. (Question 44505/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Angling Sector)

Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Seán Kyne): I propose to take Questions Nos. 199 and 201 together. 
The information requested is as follows:
 Inspections 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017B No of Iicence inspections of recreational anglers 4,986A 18,657 14,461 17,042 16,499 8,874 No of other angling Inspections 5,302A 14,985 16,795 17,254 19,511 7,823 
A. Details for 6 months as reporting metric was commenced mid...

202. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the status of the Aarhus Convention Bill. (Question 44506/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Legislative Programme)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): The draft Heads of the Aarhus Convention Bill are scheduled for publication before year-end, and will then be subjected to the pre-legislative scrutiny process, with a view to progressing the Bill through the Oireachtas next year.
Ireland ratified the Aarhus Convention in 2012 and over 60 pieces of legislation have been used to implement it. The Convention governs environmental justice rights, and is formed by t...

256. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the reason a person (details supplied) in County Clare who is currently in receipt of the State pension, contributory, did not receive the maximum rate of payment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44536/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - State Pension (Contributory) Applications)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): The person concerned is in receipt of a reduced rate state pension (contributory) based on an assessed yearly average of 35 contributions, covering the period from July 1970 to December 2016.
The person concerned has a social insurance record of 1,625 reckonable contributions and credits. There are gaps in their insurance record for the years 1978 to 1989, from 1990 to 1992, and for the year 2016. These gaps impact ...

338. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) in County Clare will receive treatment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43654/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The scheduling of appointments is a matter for the hospital to which the patient...

360. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) in County Clare will receive a surgery appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43794/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
In relation to the specific case raised, I have asked the HSE to respond to you ...

140. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Health the status of an operation for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43124/17 asked on 11 Oct 2017 - Hospital Waiting Lists)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
 In relation to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have...

144. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) in County Clare will have eye surgery in University Hospital Limerick; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43160/17 asked on 11 Oct 2017 - Hospital Waiting Lists)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The scheduling of appointments is a matter for the hospital to which the patient...

347. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Health the status of a medical assessment for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42726/17 asked on 10 Oct 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The scheduling of appointments is a matter for the hospital to which the patient ...

22. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his plans to address concerns that wholesale closures of post offices are imminent; his further plans for the post office network; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42100/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - Post Office Network)

Deputy Timmy Dooley: A procurement process has been under way for some time around the national broadband plan. The national broadband plan has been in the offing since 2012. At this stage, could the Minister give us some indication as to the date on which every premises in the country will be connected and can he give us some idea of a date when, or even within a range within which, the contractor might begin work on the roll-out of the plan?
 ...

24. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the procurement status of the national broadband plan; the date by which all premises in the country will have access to broadband; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42101/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - National Broadband Plan)

Deputy Brian Stanley: My question relates to the national broadband plan.
2 o’clockI want to raise with the Minister the fact that we have no timeframe for its completion, or even a tender date for the completion process. Does the Minister feel that he has sufficient control over the tender process, given developments in recent weeks? Will the cost to the State be excessive? I am very concerned about this.
 ...

26. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his views on concerns that the national mitigation strategy will fail to reduce Ireland’s carbon emissions sufficiently resulting in significant fines from the European Union and dangerous weather change worldwide; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42134/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - National Mitigation Plan)

Deputy Timmy Dooley: There are serious concerns that Ireland’s national mitigation strategy will fail to reduce Ireland’s carbon emissions sufficiently resulting in significant fines from the European Union and dangerous weather changes around the globe. Will the Minister enlighten us on where he is at on that particular strategy?
 ...

40. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his plans to address concerns that the proposed environmental levy on tyres will push consumers to procure tyres from outside of the State; the level of engagement he has had with the tyre industry, particularly in the Border counties; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 41901/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - Waste Tyre Disposal)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): Over 20,000 farms have been affected by illegal dumping. The level of illegal dumping of various waste types is a major environmental problem that needs to be met head on. I have made €1.3 million available to support a major anti-dumping initiative by local authorities and communities. In addition, I have allocated €1 million to local authorities to remove stockpiles of waste tyres. The local authorities ha...

41. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the procurement status of the national broadband plan; the date by which every premises in the country will have access to broadband; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 41900/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - National Broadband Plan)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): As I indicated in my responses to questions higher up on today’s order paper, last week the procurement process being managed by my Department reached a key milestone with the receipt of “Detailed Submissions”.  Two submissions were received from Eircom Limited and the Granahan McCourt, enet, SSE, John Laing Group plc consortium.  As the House is no doubt aware, SIRO formally communicated its withdrawal from the...