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Judgement reserved in wind farm challenge  

Credit:  Donegal News | 9 July 2012 ~~

Judgement has been reserved in a case taken by a landowner in the Glen of Glenties who is seeking to quash an An Bord Pleanála decision to grant planning permission for a 13-turbine windfarm in the area.

After 15 days in the High Court in Dublin, Mr Justice Daniel Herbert reserved judgement in the case of Margaret McCallig v An Bord Pleanála (ABP), Donegal County Council and PJ Molloy.

Ms McCallig, a native of Edeninfagh, Glenties, had brought a challenge to planning permission which was granted to Mr PJ Molloy, Dooish, Ballybofey, for the construction of 35 wind turbines at Graffy and Meenagrubby and surrounding townlands near Glenties.

The number of turbines had been reduced by ABP to 13.

Ms McCallig brought judicial review proceedings seeking to have the decision to grant planning permission quashed by the court on the grounds that a portion of her lands had been included in the plans and drawings of the development without her consent, permission or authority.

She also argued that ABP had subsequently determined the application and included conditions which provided for works and assessments to be carried out upon her lands.

She also challenged the permission on the basis that information in relation to the Environmental Impact Assessment of the development was inadequate under two main headings: That the affect on the cultural heritage of the area, being a Gealtacht area had not been properly assessed and that inadequate information had been supplied in relation to protected habitats and species in the area of the proposed development.

The issues in the case were contested by ABP and by Mr Molloy while Donegal County Council did not participate in the legal proceedings.

An earlier application had been brought to court by a company called Cornacarkfree Wind Limited to be joined as a ‘notice party’ in this case.

The company claimed to be the “true” and “real” promoters of the proposed windfarm as opposed to the named applicant, Mr Molloy.

However Cornacarkfree later withdrew its application to become involved in the said proceedings.

Costs relating to this element of the proceedings were awarded against the company by order of the President of the High Court on December 15.

The hearing on the substantive issues concluded before his Honour Mr Justice Herbert last Wednesday after 15 days of hearing and the Judge indicated that he was reserving his judgement for consideration and that his Judgement would be available later in the year.

Ms Margaret McCallig was represented by Mr Eamon Galligan, Senior Counsel and Michael O’Donnell, Barrister, instructed by Walter P Toolan and Sons, Solicitors, Ballinamore, County Leitrim.

Mr Molloy was represented by Mr Garrett Simons, Senior Counsel, and Mr Noel Travers, Barrister, instructed by Gibson and Associates, Solicitors, Letterkenny.

Source:  Donegal News | 9 July 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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