A satellite image of Storm Ciara closing in on Kerry – and the rest of Ireland.
By Anthony Neeson
Kerry TD Danny Healy Rae has apologized for comments he made about climate change.
Healy Rae was involved in an argument with Green candidate Cleo Murphy. Murphy told him that the road home to Kilgarvan and Kenmare was impassable due to a landslide.
Previously, Healy Rae had dismissed climate change, saying on TV: “Vote for the people, stay with the people, and to hell with the planet and the fellas that say we must save the planet and forget about the people.
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“I’m not one of those people, I make no apologies to anyone anywhere for that and I stay with the people as long as the people want me.”
After the interview, Mr. Healy Rae was confronted by Green Party candidate Cleo Murphy. The west coast, including Kerry, was being battered by Storm Ciara at the time leading to flooding in many areas.
“So how are we going to get home Danny?” she asked. “How are we going to get home?”
“Foiladonn, past Glenflesk Church. I got the river cleaned there,” he answered.
“The whole place is flooded and you are saying to hell with the planet!” she replied.
“The Flesk River was cleaned because of my representation.”
The next day, Mr. Healy Rae, whose brother Michael topped the poll in Kerry, apologized for his comments.
“If my comment offended anyone, I want to sincerely apologize for that,” he said.
“Obviously I care about the planet as the people in it. The point I was trying to get across is as much as we must mind the planet, we must be fair to the people. Again I apologize and withdraw these remarks.”
This was not the first time that Danny Healy Rae has expressed doubts about climate change. During a Dáil debate he said: “God above is in charge of the weather and we here can’t do anything about it.”