Call For Wind Farm Guidelines In Tipperary

Councillor Davy Dunne of Sinn Féin has called on the Minister for the Environment to immediately publish long-awaited guidelines on the location of wind-farms. He was speaking after this months Tipperary County Council meeting, where a Sinn Féin motion calling for a moratorium on the granting of planning permission was ruled as inoperable by County Manager Joe McGrath.

Cllr Dunne said: “In consultation with members of the Suir Valley Environmental Action Group, we put forward a motion seeking a temporary moratorium on the granting of planning permission for further wind-farms in Tipperary. We felt this was a prudent approach to a growing problem, as the moratorium was to last only until the national guidelines on their planning were published.”

Call For Wind Farm Guidelines In Tipperary

Wind Farm in Tipperary

County Manager Joe McGrath expressed his opinion that such a moratorium was unworkable. We are disappointed with that view, but that in no way lessens the urgency of our call for the immediate publication of national guidelines. Minister Kelly needs to acknowledge and act upon the concerns of so many Tipperary residents about the free-for-all nature of current wind-farm development.”

Potentially, this could have been a very short moratorium, but it would have given communities in such idyllic places as Faugheen and Newtown Upper a respite from their concern that their beautiful townland was to be home to an archaeologically destructive wind-farm.”

Such is the level of concern, that 40 petition emails were presented by the Action Group, one of which had 103 names on it. That’s a large number in a relatively small townland.”

Wind-farms do have a part to play in providing this country with energy security, but they have to be in the right place not just for the wind, but also for the communities who must live with them. The headlong unregulated rush into wind-farming needs to be balanced with an understanding that wind is not the only renewable energy available to us in Ireland. Biomass and tidal energy, along with intelligent planning and home design also have their part to play.”

It’s easy to forget how big wind turbines can be, if you only see them in the distance, or they’re in someone else’s village. To get a sense of how big they are drive past Monaincha bog, just after exit 21 on the M7 southbound, where turbines are very close to the motorway. The turbines don’t look out of place there because of the motorway, but you can understand their size better because they’re so close to the road, and you can compare them to the size of the cars going by.”

Suir Valley Environmental Action Group are doing great work to protect their townland, and to defend the rare ring-forts on the hills of Carrigadoon and Curraghdobbin. The sooner the Minister matches their effort and publishes the new guidelines the better.”


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