Irish Times

Conference hears of how Dublin might reach ambitious air quality targets by 2030

Parents should be legally prohibited from driving their children to school, a senior Dublin City Council official has told a clean air conference.

The Climate Brave event drew a panel of experts to discuss how the capital might reach ambitious air quality targets by 2030, often by way of “difficult and potentially unpopular decisions”.

Brendan O’Brien, head of technical services for traffic, said that if given the power “what I would do in the morning is actually make it illegal for anybody to drive their kids to school”.

“That’s the most critical thing we could do because it would then force us, I suppose, to provide public transport and walking and cycling [facilities],” he said in response to a hypothetical policy question.

“It would also eliminate the reason a lot of people say they need to drive: they’re dropping their kids off. It’s not that we don’t understand that people have to do this, it’s just that in order of us sometimes to provide all the alternatives quickly enough we have to have this massive pressure.”

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Irish Times