The Marine Institute is seeking permission to instal three 60m-high wind turbines within Galway Bay for a trial offshore electricity generating station.
The turbines would be half the height of Dublin’s Spire, while the prototype generating station would cover 37 hectares of the bay, almost 30 times the size of Croke Park.
The 35-year lease application seeks to upgrade the State’s existing ocean energy test site off Spiddal, Co Galway.
The institute was awarded the original lease in 2006, and the project involves the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland.
The installations would be visible from land, with the nearest shore point 1.27km away.
The institute said it would open a statutory four-week public consultation on the project on April 18th.
The foreshore lease application says noise would be limited to “ambient background” sound, and its impact would be “visual intrusion” rather than “visual obstruction”.
However, local residents have pointed out that a 35- year-lease suggests the site could be sublet to a private operator.