Wind farm group will fight appeal ‘to the last man’

A group opposed to wind farms in north Kerry has pledged to "to fight to the last man" an appeal against a Kerry County Council decision to refuse planning permission for a development near Listowel.

Stacks Mountain Windfarm Ltd has lodged an appeal to An Bord Pleanála in relation to its proposed 10-turbine windfarm at Ballyhorgan, Listowel.

The North Kerry Wind Turbines Awareness Group, which has led opposition to the proposal, said it will fully contest the appeal.

“We have our submissions ready and are waiting for An Bord Pleanála to call us,’’ said group chairman Gerard Doyle.

Upwards of 300 objections to the original application were previously submitted to the county council and a petition was signed by more than 1,000 people.

The objectors have asked the developers not to go ahead with their plans.

“If this wind farm is allowed to proceed it will be a denial of democracy and we’re prepared to fight against it to the last man.

“This area already has too many wind turbines. We, the local people, are grateful for the council’s rejection of the planning application.

“We also appreciate the unanimous support of councillors who are seeking to ban wind farms completely in north Kerry in the new county development plan.’’

The council gave the thumbs-down to the wind farm on the grounds that it would seriously injure the amenities of the area and would be contrary to wind energy guidelines for local authorities.

The 156.5m turbines would be the highest in the State and taller than the Dublin Spire by 30m.

Objectors claimed the turbines would dominate the rural community, would destroy the landscape, devalue homes, and cause disruption to local life through noise and shadow flicker.

Enerco Energy, the parent of company of Stacks Mountain Windfarm, has maintained the project would be in line with state policy to have 40% of our energy produced from renewable sources, chiefly wind, by 2020.

The company also said it carried out extensive studies of wildlife, archaeology, hydrology, and every aspect of natural life in the area as part of a comprehensive impact assessment.

The company has four weeks to submit an appeal to An Bord Pleanála.


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