As I first mentioned last June at http://blog.eogn.com/eastmans_online_genealogy/2010/06/certificate-of-irishness-open-to-70-million-people-worldwide.html, the Irish government has been thinking of issuing "Irish certificates." Now the controversial plan is to go ahead. The Republic's Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed that the scheme for a certificate of Irish heritage would be unveiled within "the next few weeks". It is aimed at up to 80 million people worldwide who are of Irish ancestry but do not qualify for an Irish passport.
The "certificates" do not require proof of Irish descent. No listing of ancestors is required. The applicant simply signs a statement that he or she is of Irish descent.
Foreign Affairs Minister Micheal Martin said the certificate, "...will enable people who have a strong Irish connection to assert their Irishness and their heritage."
The certificate will have no legal standing. In other words, it isn't worth the paper it is printed on.