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Turbines ‘can co-exist with stud farms’, says power company

Wind turbines can co-exist with the equine industry in Ireland as they do across the world, that’s according to Element Power Ireland.

The company was responding to the Irish Thoroughbred Breeder’s Association’s opposition to its plans for 750 wind turbines across the midlands.

It cited two UK examples of stud farms operating successfully adjacent to wind turbines.

“It is factually incorrect to claim wind energy might interfere with breeding or raising and training of thoroughbreds. There is no credible evidence for this, the Delabole and Stags Holt experiences prove that the wind and equine sectors can co-exist very easily and harmoniously”, said Chief Development Officer of Element Power Ireland, Kevin O’Donovan.

“We should bear in mind that in addition to the very substantial community benefits and income to local authorities, opponents of the project are also denying landowners in the Midlands, the opportunity to develop a fixed and substantial new private income stream from promoting wind energy on their holdings.” The ITBA say it is not opposed to renewable energy but “this project is incompatible with breeding, raising and training thoroughbreds.”

Meanwhile, up to 100 people turned out at a public meeting in Rathangan last Tuesday September 24 to hear Henry Fingleton of People Over Wind and Andrew Duncan from the Lakelands Wind Farm Group outline their concerns. Chairman Tom Burns said an action group would be formed if people were interested in campaigning against the plans. Disappointment was expressed that no councillors were in attendance. At the Rathangan Threshing last Sunday 29, a balloon was raised by a local farmer to 185m to show people how high the turbines would be.