|Leader of the Green Party|
27 May 2011
|Preceded by||John Gormley|
|Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources|
14 June 2007 – 23 January 2011
|Preceded by||Noel Dempsey|
|Succeeded by||Pat Carey|
May 2002 – February 2011
28 July 1963 |
|Political party||Green Party|
|Alma mater||University College Dublin|
Eamon Ryan (born 28 July 1963) is an Irish politician and leader of the Irish Green Party. He was a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Dublin South constituency from 2002 to 2011, and served as Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources from 2007 to 2011.
Early and personal life
Ryan was born in Dublin and raised in Dundrum where he continues to live. He was educated at Gonzaga College and University College Dublin where he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree. After a period of unemployment in the mid 1980s, he worked as a tour operator. He was the founder of Irish Cycling Safaris, a company which organises cycling holidays in Ireland and Europe. He married the author and journalist Victoria White in 1996.
He first became involved in politics in 1998 when he was co-opted to Dublin City Council. He topped the poll at the 1999 local elections in the Rathmines electoral area. From 1995 to 2002 he served on the advisory committee of the Dublin Transport Office. At the 2002 general election he was first elected to Dáil Éireann as a TD for Dublin South. He served as Green Party spokesperson for Transport, Enterprise, Trade and Employment and Communications, Marine and Natural Resources during the 29th Dáil.
He announced on 13 September 2004 that he intended to ask his party to nominate him as a candidate for the 2004 presidential election. However, when it was announced that the incumbent, Mary McAleese, was seeking a second term he withdrew. His campaign was also hit by his admission of cannabis use, an illegal drug.
He was re-elected at the 2007 general election. Following the Green Party's special convention vote in favour of entering into a coalition government with Fianna Fáil and the Progressive Democrats on 13 June 2007, Ryan was appointed to the cabinet as Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources when the 30th Dáil sat the following day.
Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources
As Minister, he stated his priorities would be to improve upon the changes underway in the Irish energy sector, with strong emphasis on aiding the adaptation of renewables and building retrofitting. He also aimed to enhance communications infrastructure where Ireland had fallen behind other countries.
Record in office
During Ryan's period in office, installed wind capacity in Ireland doubled, and by 2010 the average daily energy derived from renewable sources (as a percentage of total demand) had increased to 17%, peaking at 42%. He also committed Ireland to the European Super Grid programme in 2009 and announced major government investment in Marine energy research projects. Government schemes were expanded for home energy retrofitting as uptake increased, the National Broadband Scheme was completed, a Broadband for Schools Scheme launched, and a national electric vehicle and chargepoint initiative was announced in conjunction with the ESB Electric Ireland and Peugeot Citroën, which was subsequently implemented by the new government.
Many environmental activists, particularly Shell to Sea and Maura Harrington, criticised Ryan for joining Fianna Fáil in coalition as the terms of the programme for government did not include a reversal or renegotiation of the proposed gas pipeline and refinery at Broadhaven Bay, County Mayo. Before entering into government, Ryan visibly supported the aims of the Shell to Sea campaign and attended their protests. Ryan was also criticised by Shell to Sea for failing to launch an independent review of the decision, as stipulated by the Green Party in a motion passed at their annual convention in 2007.
2011 general election and Green Party leadership
Ryan resigned as Minister on 23 January 2011 when the Green Party withdrew from government. He subsequently lost his seat at the 2011 general election receiving 6.8% of the vote. As part of his pension Ryan will receive a lump sum of €110,000 and an annual pension of €51,000 when he is 65, in 2028.
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- "David Norris in Irish presidential campaign row". BBC News. Retrieved 1 June 2011.
- "EirGrid Policy and Targets". EirGrid plc. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
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- Jha, Alok (3 January 2010). "Europe Unites Behind Renewable Energy Supergrid". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 28 May 2011.
- "Retrofit Consultation". Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
- "National Broadband Scheme". Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
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- "Irish Government and ESB sign new electric car deal with PSA Peugeot Citroën". ESB. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
- "Minister Rabbitte launches Electric Vehicle Grant Scheme". Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
- "Shell to Sea challenge Ministers to dismantle illegal Shell pipeline". Shell to Sea. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
- "Corrib gas protesters meet Ministers". Shell to Sea. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
- "Ryan ministry is welcomed by Shell to Sea". Western People. 20 June 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2009.
- "Greens urge Ryan to consider moving Corrib gas refinery". The Irish Times. 11 July 2008. Retrieved 7 January 2009.
- "Green Party General Election Manifesto 2007". Green Party. Retrieved 28 May 2011.
- "Green Party withdraws from government". RTÉ News. 23 January 2011. Retrieved 23 January 2011.
- "Dublin South election results". RTÉ News. 26 February 2011. Retrieved 26 February 2011.
- "Outgoing TDs pensions". The Irish Times. 5 March 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Eamon Ryan.|
|Green Party Teachta Dála for Dublin South
as Minister for Communications, Marine and Natural Resources
|Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources
|Party political offices|
|Leader of the Green Party