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Farmers 'may live to regret' cash for wind turbines  

Farmers who pocket large sums for allowing giant wind turbines near their homes may “live to regret it”, the head of An Bord Pleanala said yesterday writes Treacy Hogan. Some landowners were prepared to tolerate the wind farm turbines within 200 metres of their homes.

But the board, in adjudicating on appeals of planning permission, was demanding “significant distance” between the turbines and homes, said John O’Connor.

“I hope they (the farmers) don’t live to regret it”, said the board chairman. “I wonder are they going to stay in their homes”, he added.

Mr O’Connor said there had been a significant number of appeals coming into the board relating to wind-farm developments around the country.

Meanwhile, the chairman said he expected up to 30 major projects to come before the fast-track strategic infrastructure system when it is introduced by the Government. These include gas pipelines, incinerators, and dumps. Any projects that seriously injure the environment will not be approved.

The Bord Pleanala annual report disclosed Donegal Co Council had the highest number of appealed planning decisions overturned by the board, at 56.7pc.

Mr O’Connor said that local authorities, which had the lowest reversal rate of their decisions, were running “the best planning regimes”.

Offaly had the lowest rate of appeal decisions overturned at 15.4pc.


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