A strong voice for Climate for Seanad 2020

Senator Alice-Mary Higgins has been an activist on climate change for over a decade and a consistent voice calling for action in the Seanad and as a member of the Oireachtas Climate Action committee.

She has been a leading voice calling for protection of hedgerows and peatlands, for investment in cycling and sustainable transport, for marine protections, for accountability for corporations, for fossil fuel divestment, for commitment to multilateral targets and processes and for a just transition.

Launch of the new TASC and Carnegie UK Trust essay collection: "Ensuring Good Future Jobs"

Speaking at the launch of the "Ensuring Good Future Jobs" essay collecting at the National University of Ireland office, Senator Alice-Mary Higgins said "The essays in this collection from TASC and the Carnegie UK Trust are the kind of joined up thinking we urgently need around the future of work. They offer a detailed examination of work and employment policy that recognises and considers the reality of people's lived experience while also looking at the wider context of society with huge care needs, a new digital landscape, a changing climate and important choices to make."

Senator Alice-Mary Higgins wins two important amendments to the Wildlife Bill

After debating the Wildlife Bill for 12 hours in the Seanad, Senator Higgins was happy to report last-minute wins in two areas. Senator Higgins succeeded in persuading the Minister to accept her amendment which requires a report to be produced on the condition, restoration and rewetting potential of ALL blanket bog National Heritage Areas before any order to remove protection of these bogs can be made. Which means no golf course or other ill-conceived developments in these National Heritage Areas for the foreseeable future. The Minister also accepted Senator Higgins' amendment to require a report on how turbury (peat cutting) rights operate – to include recommendations on a definition of ‘household use’ – important not only in terms of climate action but also a just transition.

Senator Alice-Mary Higgins welcomes decision not to permit hedge-cutting in August and calls on Minister Madigan to review the Heritage Act and to protect biodiversity

The decision by the Minister not to extend hedge-cutting into August this year is an important recognition of the growing crisis in biodiversity in Ireland and worldwide.
Senator Higgins said in response to today’s announcement, “I am glad to see Minister Madigan has apparently given new consideration to the serious concerns expressed by myself and others during the extensive Seanad Debate in the Heritage Bill and has removed the threat of August cutting from the habitats which our insects, birds, bees rely on. The essential next step must be to review this flawed legislation and ensure that biodiversity is protected not just this year but every year.”