Climate protest takes place in Dublin ahead of Cop28

Stop Climate Chaos staged a protest in Dublin (PA)
Stop Climate Chaos staged a protest in Dublin (PA) Stop Climate Chaos staged a protest in Dublin (PA)

Climate protesters have gathered outside Leinster House in Dublin ahead of a major environmental conference in the United Arab Emirates.

World leaders are meeting in Dubai over the coming days for the Cop28 climate summit.

The protest on Kildare Street on Wednesday was organised by Stop Climate Chaos, which describes itself as a coalition of civil society groups in Ireland.

People dressed in elephant masks and suits as they called for Ireland to switch away from its dependence on fossil fuels without exacerbating the lives of those who are already struggling to pay electricity bills.

Cop28 summit
Cop28 summit Stop Climate Chaos members dressed as Big Oil CEOs in black business suits while wearing elephant masks outside Leinster House in Dublin (Niall Carson/PA)

“We have had almost 30 years of Cop conferences which almost completely ignored the elephant in the room – fossil fuels,” Jerry Mac Evilly of Friends of the Earth said.

“The science is clear – the window to prevent climate breakdown is closing and we don’t have time to waste. States must be clear that the only way to tackle the climate crisis is to urgently end our addiction to dirty, expensive gas, coal and oil.”

The CEO of Irish charity Trocaire, Caoimhe de Barra, said that in the countries where they operate, staff see communities “having their entire villages swept away by floods, we’re seeing droughts that last for years, and people’s ability to cope is being eroded”.

“It’s terribly unjust because people in the countries that are most affected by climate change have done the least to cause this crisis,” she said.

“This is why we need to phase out of fossil fuels urgently, but also in a fair manner, with the most industrialised countries that have caused this crisis leading the way”.