Enviro – 10th November 2017

On this Edition of Enviro the Team discuss

  • Hemp and its uses  The first part of the Enviro program contained an interview with Brian Houlihan  who curates the Dublin Hemp Museum located at the Hemp Store 165 Capel Street Dublin. John introduced him and  outlined some aspects and issues its history and uses, including:  rope making how it has influenced language, the fact that  Henry Ford manufactured a  hemp car in 1941.
    • Uses of hemp  include  building construction, clothes, paper, food, medicinal etc.  John asked  why the growing of hemp is restricted.  Brian pointed out that   hemp can be grown on any kind of land?   Blockages to the growing of hemp were discussed. John posed the question as to whether hemp could save the rainforests as it was a perfect substitute for wood. Is the fact that hemp leaves look identical to cannabis a problem in its promotion? Is it possible to discuss hemp without discussing cannabis and medical cannabis and its curative powers. Why is cannabis a class one and so the most restrictive class of  drug in the US? What has the pharmaceutical industry got to do in the debate about hemp and cannabis? Brian referred to the hemp shop’s  website, facebook, and blog and referred to some useful videos showing hemp cultivation in parts of Ireland.  There followed a discussion with Joe Dunne, Robert Navan and Yuta Celemare with regard to  public awareness of the issues involved and the need for more understanding on the subject  and the need to counteract  inaccurate information. Brian is  researching the history of hemp in Ireland for future publication and mentioned that he also works  with some of Ireland’s current hemp farmers, of which there are 16 at present ,who are  licensed to grow a total of 76.45 hectares (188.9 acres).
      • Interview with Tony Lowes Representing the “Friends of the Irish Enviroment.
        • It was stated that “ the March to a sustainable low-carbon economy is now well under way and that  regardless of how much progress is made at the COP 23 talks on the subject of climate change in Bonn Germany next week  a sustainable low-carbon economy is inevitable with or without the US An organisation called  Nation Ireland is active making Ireland as a hub for sustainable business and investment and  last month signed the ‘Casablanca Declaration’- an important UN Environmental Program initiative which aligns major financial centres including Dublin as key hubs for green money and investment. The present CO2 levels are at the highest  since 5 million years ago (World Meteorological Organisation) and in the year 2016 the rate of CO2 emissions was 403 parts per billion,  45% higher than before the Industrial Revolution.  The World Meteorological Organisation has pointed out that “the abrupt changes in the atmosphere in the past 70 years are without precedent”
        • Tony Lowes pointed out that two weeks ago, the state dismissed a case taken by The Friends of the Irish Environment on the climate impact of a new runaway at Dublin airport. This case raised  the issue of the  consequent exponential aviation emissions  which in the opinion of the Friends of the Irish Environment would seriously exacerbate Ireland’s  climate conditions. Tony explained the importance of taking legal cases to do with the failures of the authorities to deal with the issues associated with climate change and the government’s failure to implement its own ‘National Mitigation Plan’.  Friends of the Irish Environment  have a campaign to Boycott Farmed Salmon at Christmas.
    •  Tony Lowes referred also to the Friends of the Irish Environment’s video on the Irish Climate Case which it  recently  published and is available on You Tube, and also a video on Donald Trump’s Dunbeg golf course and the issues involved therein . Presenter John Haughton, panellists Joe Dunne and Robert Navan and guest  Yuta  Celmare took part in a discussion on the matters and issues involved. Tony referred to his organisation’s  website www.friendsoftheirishenvironment.org/climate-case and mention was made to some of the recommendations of  the Citizen’s Assembly which was set up to ascertain public opinion   on the subject matter under discussion and make recommendations to the Government.


      Presenter/Producer John Haughton

      Panellists Joe Dunne, Robert Navan,   

      Studio guest: Juta Celmare