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Government urged to upgrade council houses to help phase out use of smoky fuels

Government urged to upgrade council houses to help phase out use of smoky fuels

The Government is being urged to upgrade council houses to help phase out the use of smoky fuels.

It comes after Minister for the Environment Eamon Ryan said peat briquettes may be included in the Government's proposed ban on smoky fuels if they are found to be over the excess pollution threshold.

The proposed ban is set to come into effect in September.

Speaking to Newstalk, Fianna FΓ‘il TD Eamon Γ“ Cuiv said the ban won't include Bord na MΓ³na's peat briquettes, because they meet environmental standards.

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Mr Γ“ Cuiv said he believes the use of smoky coals will reduce sharply over the next decade with more investment from the State.

"When I look around my constituency, a very large number of the houses that use solid fuel burners are owned by the local authorities," Mr Γ“ Cuiv said.

"So the tenants have no control over what type of fuel they burn and they only way to change that is for the State to invest in upgrading the heating systems in these houses to sustainable types of fuel."

The proposed ban has been subject to widespread criticism, especially from Government backbench TDs.

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In April, the Government survived a DΓ‘il vote seeking to cancel the carbon tax increase and scrap the plans to restrict the sale of smokey fuels later this year.

The Government successfully saw off the motion by 72 votes to 63.

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