Introduction – What is the Green Economy?

The Green Economy is a response to many of the problems that society faces as a result of our rapid development over the last century. It is an economic model that encourages the efficient and sustainable use of natural resources while minimising climate change and promoting social equity. It includes a broad range of industries which make a particular contribution to these goals.

Key to building a Green Economy is increasing our use of renewable energy, including wind power, wave power, biomass, hydro power and others. By using such a diverse range of renewable resources we can achieve secure, carbon neutral energy supply.

Crucially, the Green Economy would also allow us to achieve energy independence. Ireland is currently one of the most fossil fuel dependent countries in Europe and this puts us at a disadvantage in a number of ways:

The Green Economy is particularly important to Ireland for these reasons and because our natural renewable energy resources are so vast that they could easily meet all our requirements.

Environmental damage and climate change inflict an immense cost on us by degrading some of our most valuable resources. The Green Economy gives us a chance to avoid this and also provides direct benefits to the economy and society. It involves a triple bottom line approach, balancing social responsibility, environmental sustainability, and economic viability, and so offers a number of unique benefits in addition to helping the environment:

Social Benefits:

Economic Benefits:

In the context of Donegal, the Green Economy has been divided into four main categories:

These themes reflect Donegal’s unique set of resources and provide a framework to pursue our goal of maximising the value of those resources for the benefit of current and future generations.




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