Enviro – 14th November 2016

This program celebrated the music and songs of Leonard Cohen. It covered a wide range of topics including discussion of the findings of the Environmental Protection Agency Ireland (EPA). It asked the question is ‘Trumpism’ good for the US and the world particularly with regard to the environment and other importance issues thrown up in the run in to the US Presidential election. It also addressed the question as to how Ireland is measuring up to its commitments to the Earth Summit COP 21 commitments which it signed up to December 2015.


The listeners heard a tribute paid by Adam Cohen son of Leonard whereby he thanked people for their sympathy expressed o n the death of his father. This was read out by John. This was followed by the instrumental track ‘Tacoma Trailer from the CD ‘The Future’, followed by extracts from the following tracks from the CD ‘Cohen Covered’ Katie Melua ‘In My Secret Life’ Dion ‘Sisters of Mercy’, Allison Crowe ‘Joan of Arc’ Martha Wainwright ‘Tower of Song’ and Judy Collins ‘Song of Bernadette’. This ended the first part of the program.

The second half included reference to important environmental findings including reference to Ireland’s Environmental Protection Agency’s report 2016 which identified problems with regard to water and air, stressing the need to move from carbon based economy to renewable. It mentioned the problem of deaths caused by particulates in the air from diesel vehicles 1,200 deaths annually, and in the case of the EU 400,000 annually as pointed out in the EEA, European Environment Agency report. Mention was made of the Irish Minister for Climate Action Denis Naughton’s statement that the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Act 2015 gives statutory authority for mitigation plans and that a draft national mitigation plan should be available for public consultation by the end of 2016 followed by submission of a final plan to Government for approval by June 2017.


There followed a discussion as to whether the US President designate’s election augers well for the US and elsewhere and Joe Dunne pointed out that his program was being designed and in a sense he has a blank canvas and we should wait to see what will unfold. He said that statements made on the run up to the election would not necessarily follow through and example was made of the Obama Care health climb down in part. John pointed out that the appointment of Steve Bannon to one of the key position because of his extreme and disturbing extreme positions on a number of issues did not auger well and that President Trump’ s rumoured cabinet wish list as outlined by political commentators included; Sarah “Drill, baby, Drill” Palin as Secretary of the Interior; anti-EPA Texas Ag Commissioner Sid Miller as Secretary of Agriculture; fracking billionaire Harold Hamm as Energy Secretary. His agenda includes, putting Keystone XL in motion; cancelling payments to UN climate change programs; lifting restrictions on dirty coal and oil production. Also predicted was the end of support for the Paris Climate deal the demise of the EPA, the end of Federal Clean Energy established policy, more off shore drilling, more coal mining and oil and gas pipelines as opposed to renewable energy development . As a result more lives would be destroyed and more wildlife eliminated.


Music/songs played in art two included ‘Hunter’s Lullaby’ from the CD ‘Leonard Cohen Various Positions’. John pointed out that this was a very powerful and artistic statement on the destruction of wildlife on the part of the human male as opposed to the female and it was a very subtle presentation. The program finished with the song ‘Love Itself’ from the CD ‘Leonard Cohen Ten New Songs’ John quoted the saying that mankind would have reached its true destiny if and when ‘the love of power would be replaced by the power of love’


Presenter: John Haughton

Panellist: Joe Dunne