Oral hearings by An Bord Pleanála into appeals against plans to build over 30 Wind Turbines at Dysart and Skyvalley in South Roscommon will open tomorrow at The Sheraton Hotel, Athlone.
Picture Credit: Irish Wind Energy Association / iwea.com
In October 2011 Roscommon County Council granted permission to construct 14 Turbines in the greater Dysart Area. The 85m high Turbines are set to be located in Cronin, Gortaphuill, Glenrevagh, Mullaghardagh, Tullyneeny and Turrock Townlands. Paul Donohue, James Francis Fallon, Thomas Burke, Maria Donnelly, Eamon Kelly, Tom and Fiona Farrell, Ted Kelly of Wind Turbine Group South Roscommon and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht have appealed against the decision.
Sky Valley Concerned Residents Group, Wind Turbine Action Group South Roscommon and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht have appealed against the decision to grant permission for 19 Wind Turbines in August 2012. The Turbines, which have a Hub Height of 85m and a rotor diameter of 100m are set to be located in Boleyduff, Cam, Cloonacaltry, Cuilleenoolagh, Feacle, Milltown, Skeavally, Tawnagh and Tobermacloughlin townlands.
The Heritage Council and Commission for Energy Regulation have also been invited to attend the hearings. A decision on the appeals is scheduled to take place no later than July 19th.
This is the latest round in an ongoing battle a number of local groups and the applicant Galetech Energy Developments Limited. Last July, Ted Kelly won a judicial review of the Developments on the basis that An Bord Pleanála failed to lawfully conduct an appropriate assessment of the proposed developments, in accordance with the Habitats Directive. Reports submitted by Mr Kelly and Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltach, who supported the appeal, indicated that the developments posed a “significant” risk to international habitats, groundwater systems and local flooding.
It was alleged at the reivew that two An Bord Pleanála inspectors had recommended that permission be refused after the initial appeal hearings. Their concerns included the visual impact of the developments and their impact on birds and habitats of conservation.