Ban on sale of smoky coal to be extended countrywide

The ban on the sale of smoky coal, which has been in place in larger towns for some time, will be extended countrywide from Autumn next year.

It is understood Minister for the Environment Denis Naughten intends to allow coal distributors 12 months from then to sell off existing stocks before a total ban comes into effect in 2019 - writes rte.ie.

Mr Naughten says clean air and air quality is a priority with around one in five children in Ireland being treated for asthma.

The burning of bituminous or smoky coal is one the worst offenders when it comes to air pollution, including particulate matter and sulphur dioxide.

A ban on the sale of smoky coal was first introduced in Dublin in 1990 where research showed it resulted in 350 fewer deaths per year throughout the city.

By 2013 the ban had been extended to the next 25 largest urban areas in the country.

The Environmental Protection Agency has repeatedly highlighted that during winter months - when solid fuel is being burned - air quality is significantly worse in smaller towns and villages than it is in larger towns and cities.

Minister Naughten had been waiting for EU clearance before he could extend the ban countrywide.

Read more news of Dublin on our site.

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