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Key Business and Political Leaders Meet to Map out Steps to Economic Recovery

10 June 2009

OFMDFM Chair Danny Kennedy MLA and Professor Tim Jackson

Key figures from the world of politics, business, the community and voluntary sector came together in Parliament Buildings today to develop a platform for economic recovery in Northern Ireland. The event, hosted by the Sustainable Development Commission in Northern Ireland, was attended by members of the Northern Ireland Green New Deal Group, Sustainable Development Commissioners, experts from across the UK and Ireland, and members of the Northern Ireland Assembly.

Speaking at the event Sustainable Development Economics Commissioner Professor Tim Jackson stated: “Governments around the world are struggling to kick-start economies that have been exposed and battered by the current financial crisis.  Alongside climate change and increased concerns about energy security it forms a ‘triple crunch’ which must be addressed in Northern Ireland. 

“Many believe that ‘New Deal’ politics will be the catalyst for recovery, but massively increased public spending needs to be defined not only in its effects for this year or next, but over the next 20 or 30 years.  It is also important that the private sector plays a leading role in helping to shape the evolving green economy of the future.” 

Professor Jackson continued:   “The Sustainable Development Commission believes that a real opportunity exists for the Executive in Northern Ireland to promote a Sustainable and Green New Deal.  This will not only help the transition to a low carbon economy in the coming years, but will also create employment now, reduce fuel poverty now, tackle social inequalities now, and lay the foundation for a new generation of innovative, exciting and world leading businesses in Northern Ireland. 

“The vast range of experience, the talent available, and the tradition of innovation represented at this meeting by the people who contribute to the Northern Ireland Green New Deal Group make it an exciting and credible driver for economic recovery.  The discussions it is having and the recommendations that it will make to Government in a number of key areas including housing, mobility, energy supply and industry, will have a real and positive impact on thousands of families on the ground across Northern Ireland. 

“Working alongside the Northern Ireland Green New Deal Group and following our own advice to the UK Government earlier this year, the Sustainable Development Commission believes that the benefits of investing now in these options are clear.  Not only will they make a fundamental contribution to the development of a low carbon economy, they will also create jobs quickly and in places that matter across Northern Ireland.  They will also reduce inequality, particularly by tackling the root causes of fuel poverty and poor access to public transport.”

View the Northern Ireland Green New Deal here...

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