Irish plan to ban polluting coal

Environment ministry proposes move to improve air quality, cut sulphur emissions

Ireland's environment ministry has proposed a nationwide ban on sales of bituminous coal, building on existing prohibitions on its use in Dublin and ten other towns with local air quality problems. Petroleum coke would also be banned to stop bituminous coal users switching to this even more polluting fuel.

Announcing a one-month consultation period on Tuesday, junior minister Dan Wallace stressed that existing local bans on bituminous coal had improved urban air quality greatly. "I think it is only fair that we consider extending these benefits to everyone," he said.

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