Government plane not used to get to Cop26, says Taoiseach

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said he did not use the government plane to get to the Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow.

Mr. Martin said “to be frank,” the state aircraft is not used regularly due to the frequent maintenance requirements.

The Taoiseach spent two days at the world conference, but said he and his team stayed in Edinburgh because Glasgow was very busy.

He was responding to Independent TD Michael McNamara who referred to Mr Martin’s remarks last week on “action instead of rhetoric”.

There has been a lot of criticism of business and political leaders entering and leaving Glasgow aboard private jets for a climate change rally and the Clare TD has asked the Taoiseach to confirm that he had not used the government jet “in the context of private sector carbon emissions. jets”.

Mr McNamara said Glasgow is a relatively easy city to get to from Ireland and can be reached by train and ferry, with five commercial flights from Dublin.

He also asked the Taoiseach to confirm “much more importantly” that the jet would no longer be used “where there is a workable alternative in the form of commercial flights to the city of destination”.

Mr Martin said: “I did not use the government plane to get to Glasgow. Due to the large number of people staying in the city, we stayed in Edinburgh and made the trip. There are huge crowds in Glasgow for Cop26, with huge interest from ‘NGOs’ and others.

He added that the government plane is not used so frequently, “not on purpose, to be frank, because we have to go to meetings and come back to this House and elsewhere, but because of its frequent need to ‘maintenance” .

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