LAOIS’ County manager Peter Carey has called on Laois County Councillors to wait for Government instruction before amending the county development plan with regard to wind turbines.
Mr Carey was speaking at this month’s County Council meeting when eight councillors brought forward a notice of motion calling on Laois County Council to “amend the county development plan in relation to wind energy strategy so that wind turbines shall be located further away from dwelling houses in view of new technology and the increased height of wind turbines”.
The council was told by Director of Services Anna Marie Delaney that the county development plan would be up for review in October of this year. She added that the government is currently reviewing guidelines regarding wind energy. “I understand your concerns but the status of these guidelines is statutory. There is a need to make an informed review. We need to have the information. I will write to both ministers. An updated guidance document would inform our policies. It should be an informed review of the county development plan”.
She was told by Cllr Padraig Fleming that “I am rejecting this approach - we want to move this forward from the ground up.”
Mr Carey said that “you are simply not making any sense, this is a legal process. You can make a submission immediately but we are not going to waste resources amending the plan and then having to start again when the department are working on deadlines. We are in a vaccum, we don’t know any information. You can make as strong a submission as possible or head down a road of wasting time and resources”.
A number of supporters from the Laois Wind Energy Awareness Group protested outside the meeting as well.