Controversial plans to build a waste-to-energy incinerator in Ringaskiddy have been met with ''anger and frustration'' today.
Seán Sherlock, Labour TD for Cork East expressed his "absolute disgust" at the decision and said the plans were a "kick in the teeth for the people of Cork".
Local campaign group, the Cork Harbour Alliance for a Safe Environment, said they were extremely disappointed with the decision and would be meeting with their legal team to consider a judicial review.
Residents of Ringaskiddy have described the plans as very disappointing and "a final nail in the coffin for Cork Harbour.
Tánaiste Simon Coveney said that he empathised with local people who opposed the plans for €160m waste facility in Cork Harbour.
He said: "My initial reaction to the decision today to grant permission to Indaver Ireland to build an incinerator in the heart of Cork Harbour is one of deep disappointment and frustration.
I have opposed this application from the beginning and have supported the local community in their efforts to prevent this from going ahead for a decade now.
"At the time of the oral hearing I made a detailed submission in person outlining that it was inconceivable for a major incinerator to be developed in a harbour area where the Government has already invested millions in a marine college, clean energy research centres and the clean-up of the old Irish Steel/Irish Ispat site on Haulbowline Island.
"We are working hard to create something very special at the heart of Cork Harbour area which is of national significance. I can understand that people will be very angry and frustrated at this announcement today and I share this sense with them."
TD for Cork South-Central and Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin also spoke of his unhappiness with the plans, and said it was the "wrong project in the wrong location" which was "very unfair to residents of Ringaskiddy and surrounding areas".
Shocked to hear about #Indaver decision on incinerator. It is the wrong project in the wrong location. Very unfair to residents of Ringaskiddy and surrounding areas. Will work with community to oppose this decision.— Micheál Martin (@MichealMartinTD) May 31, 2018
Speaking on RTÉ's News at One Mr Martin said the local people of Ringaskiddy had been tolerant of developments thus far but that this was a "step too far".
Planning issues have not been addressed properly and where there is incineration, recycling goes down says Fianna Fáil leader @MichealMartinTD as Indaver Ireland is given the go ahead to incinerate in Ringaskiddy, Co Cork— RTÉ News at One (@RTENewsAtOne) May 31, 2018
Earlier this afternoon. waste company Indaver Ireland said: "We are pleased that An Bord Pleanala has decided to grant permission for our Ringaskiddy project, however, we are conscious that this decision simply marks another step in a long process.
"As we have said from the outset, we believe that our plans are fully in line with national, regional and local planning regulations which was acknowledged by Cork County Council and has been reinforced by An Bord Pleanala's decision to grant permission."
Earlier: Planning permission granted for controversial €160m waste incinerator in Ringaskiddy
Planning permission has been granted for a controversial waste incinerator in Ringaskiddy.
An Bord Pleanála wrote to the applicants and opponents this morning informing them of their decision to grant permission for the development.
The decision follows years of applications and appeals as the development has faced huge opposition from residents in the local harbour.
The controversial €160m waste facility, to be built by Indaver, will process 240,000 tonnes of waste every year.
The latest planning application was lodged in January 2016 with an oral hearing taking place in April and May of that year. The ruling was initially expected in July 2016 but was delayed on numerous occasion.
It is the third time since 2001 that Indaver has applied to build an incinerator in Ringaskiddy.
Mary O'Leary of the CHASE group, who had fought a long battle against the incinerator plan, said she was shocked to find out the development this morning.
She said: "This is terrible - I am shocked. We had been absolutely hoping for an outright refusal."
She said CHASE will be meeting with their legal team to discuss the possibility of seeking a judicial review of the An Bord Pleanála decision.
Cork’s Green Party also objected to the incinerator and said they are disappointed by the decision.
Speaking this morning the party's representative in Cork South Central, Lorna Bogue, said:"I am extremely disappointed in this decision by An Bórd Pleanála.
“They were provided with several strong environmental reasons as to why this facility was not suited to this site.
"In my own submission, I highlighted the fact that Ireland does not, in fact, produce enough waste to keep this incinerator open.”
Independent county councillor Marcia D'Alton said: "I am absolutely devastated. We have been 17 years fighting this."
It is a very, very sad morning. Since we began fighting this 17 years ago, Spike Island has become one of the most recognised tourist attractions in the world - it is just 750 metres away from the planned incinerator. What does this mean for Spike?
"An Bord Pleanála has made a very wrong decision."