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A full return to office by public service would be a major missed opportunity to be climate brave

Fianna Fáil TD for Dublin North West, Paul McAuliffe, has said that a full return of employees to the office next month would be a missed opportunity. Deputy McAuliffe commented, "The benefits of remote working are well documented. Less traffic conjestion, fewer transport emmisions, improved air quality mean a better quality of life for many. "This raises the question as to what the impliactions would be for energy use and greenhouse gas emmsions if a significant amount of a people were to return to an office environment over the next month or so. "Remote working has often been proposed as a solution to the growing and unsustainable problem of transport emmissions. We now have a real opportunity to examine our relationship with travel, reduce our individial carbon footprint and for large employers to reduce their corporate carbon footprint and reshape the way they work, permanently "Government has introduced remote working legislation but we can be more ambitious that that.Thousands of public servants who are employed by government itself, where possible should remain working from home with increased online management and IT resources. "I am calling on the Minister for Transport, Climate and Environment Eamon Ryan and the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, to establish a joint departmental taskforce to see how this can be championed further in the private sector. There are challenges to the people working from home for city centre retailers, employers with long term leases etc but we need to grab this climate action opportunity and be climate brave.”

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