18/06/15 Senator Daly Speaks on the Department of Health’s cut of Hospital beds in Beaumont Hospital and on Climate Change

Senator Daly: I support my colleague, Senator Darragh O’Brien, and second his amendment to the Order of Business on bringing in the Minister, Deputy Varadkar, who one would swear was not the Minister for Health and merely worked as a commentator condemning actions in his own Department, allowing his response to be dictated by Beaumont Hospital and then wondering why it was not brought up yesterday. If it had been brought up yesterday, it would have been ruled out of order because it was not related to the Bill under discussion. Not only does the Minister not know what is going on in his own Department, but Leo, the commentator, does not know how the Seanad works.

—-Later—-

Senator Daly: I am sorry – the Minister does not know how the Seanad works.

I welcome the announcement by the Pope in the past half an hour on climate change and ask for a debate on it. Climate change is the most serious issue facing mankind. It is the most serious threat facing the world at this time. When one considers that half of the creatures of the Earth have disappeared since 1990, in China life expectancy has reduced by five years because of air pollution and the US Army has stated that it is a more serious threat than terrorism, that is the level of threat the planet faces at this time. I ask that we have this debate. It is not about being optimistic or pessimistic, but about being determined. There is a UN conference coming up in Paris in the near future and many of the experts in the field of climate change have stated that those who will decide the outcome in Paris will decide who lives and who dies. That is how serious climate change is for the planet. It is an issue that does not affect Europe as much as it affects those in Africa and elsewhere in the developing world, but it affects them to a degree that is life-threatening. I ask the Leader organise a debate in that regard.

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