Opposition is mounting to a proposed cross-border wind farm which would result in another two wind turbines being built on the Laois landscape.
Residents of Rathdowney have written to Laois County Council expressing their outrage at plans to construct two wind turbines to a maximum tip height of 156m, at the Laois portion of the cross-border Lisheen III Wind Farm in the townland of Graigueadrisly. A further six turbines are planned for Kilkenny, while an application has also been made by SWS Energy Limited for permission to lay underground cable at Kiloran, Co. Tipperary.
As part of their application, SWS Energy Limited have provided an Environmental Impact Statement, prepared on behalf of Bord Gáis Energy Ltd by Tobin Consulting Engineers. The report claims that the wind farm “will not contribute to greenhouse gas emissions as it is a renewable energy source”. It is also claimed that the project “will conform with all of the requirements of the planning and design guidelines for wind farms as set out in the relevant County Development Plans”.
However a number of people in both Laois and Kilkenny have written to Laois County Council objecting to the plans. John and Lily Doyle, Kyle, Rathdowney, and Joseph and Ann Doyle, Rathpatrick, Crosspatrick, Kilkenny, have made similar submissions. Both couples claim that the company did not provide adequate public consultation, as neither of them were aware of the consultation evening which took place in Crosspatrick on November 19, 2013.
They also claim that the site notice was not displayed properly, and they highlight the visual impact of the project on the landscape and the noise, light flicker, and health issues. It was also pointed out that the national planning guidelines review is not yet complete.
Another submission was made by Monica Curran, Kyle, Rathdowney, who said the turbines would be very unsightly, would interfere with telephone reception, would be very noisy, and could lead to health issues.
And a detailed submission was made by Sean and Fiona Doyle, Kyle, Rathdowney. They too claimed that they did not know about the public consultation, and raised concerns over the visual impact as the proposed turbines will be seen at a larger scale than the existing turbines.
The said that the site notice was not displayed for the first two weeks, and the guidelines review is not yet completed. They also raised concerns over noise, light flicker and health issues.
A decision was due from Laois County Council by July 6.