Independent TD Carol Nolan has said the Climate Change Advisory Council (CCAC) is dumping "ideological nonsense" all across rural Ireland with the "full blessing of a complicit and grossly out-of-touch government, that does not have the first clue about how hard life is becoming under the green dictatorship".

The TD for Laois-Offaly has said that the recommendations on carbon budgets put forward by the CCAC will generate a rural revolution akin to the protests against water charges that took place from 2014 to 2017.

Deputy Nolan commented: “The carbon budgets that have been proposed are simply unacceptable and will be fiercely resisted by anyone who has the first clue about the real-world impacts they will generate.

“Every single aspect of Irish life, but in particular Irish rural life, will be adversely impacted by the knock on effects of introducing a punitive and absurd emissions regime that will make it more expensive to produce food, increase the need for imports and put tens of thousands of people out of work.

“Transport sectors like the hauliers are already crippled by the costs associated with the carbon tax. How will this sector survive further year on year increases and additional regulatory burdens?

“The Climate Change Advisory Council is also suggesting that a complete removal of coal and peat for residential heating take place between 2020 and 2030.

“This is despite the fact that Eamon Ryan promised us in a press statement in September that in order to accommodate those with rights to harvest sod peat, no ban on its burning will be introduced.

“This is exactly the kind of creeping criminalisation that I have been warning about for some time,” she added.

Deputy Nolan was speaking after rural organisations and farmer representative bodies reacted with dismay to the content of the carbon budgets and the level of emission cuts being proposed for each of the periods 2021-2025; 2026-2030 and2031-2035.