A three-year dispute involving the building of a wind farm in Bantry, Co Cork, looks closer to a resolution after opponents of the project delivered a letter to the developer yesterday welcoming his offer to put power lines underground.
The row escalated last month when farmers defied court orders and blocked ESB crews from accessing their lands.
Twenty-six farmers said they were opposed, on safety grounds, to the construction of overhead power lines.
They insisted the 14km (nine miles) line from Glanta Commons to Ballylickey needed to be put underground.
Bantry Concerned Action Group (BCAG) will seek another meeting with developer Bob Murnane to discuss details of the route now that agreement has been reached on putting the line underground.
BCAG spokesman Quentin Gargan said yesterday the group wanted to find out exactly where the line was going to be developed.
“We are seeking clarification as to what route the underground line is going to go.
“Bob Murnane has offered to put the power line under the exact same route as the existing line but we don’t think that is technically feasible or the cheapest route.”
He said the group wanted to clarify if the ESB was willing to agree to the line being placed underground.
On August 21st last, talks were held between the developer and the objectors in a bid to reach agreement on the building of the wind farm.
Malcolm Thompson, president of the Irish Cattle and Sheep Association, acted as mediator during the talks.
The landowners maintained they had no objection to the wind farm itself, or to green energy.
Their argument was that laying the cables underground would prevent the risk of cancer.
Â© The Irish Times
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