The majority of local councillors are opposed to Gaeltech Energy Limited’s plans to construct nine 185m turbines in the north Westmeath townlands of Ballagh, Billistown, Ballynacor, and Bracklyn and the townland of Coolronan in Meath.
At a special online meeting this afternoon to record elected members’ views for inclusion in the council’s submission to An Bord Pleanala regarding Gaeltech’s application, which is being decided by the planning authority as it has been deemed a Strategic Infrastructure Development (SID), most of the councillors who spoke were against the development going ahead.
Councillors Andrew Duncan, Denis Leonard, Aoife Davitt, John Shaw, Bill Collentine, Johnnie Penrose and Cathaoirleach Frankie Keena voiced their opposition to the project citing a range of concerns, including the potentially negative impact on property prices, landscape and wildlife, noise pollution, shadow flicker, the height of the turbines and the fact that it contravenes the county development plan’s policies on wind energy.
Cllr Frank McDermott said that he was in favour of the development as long as it complies with national guidelines, while Cllr Louise Heavin said that while she was not overly concerned about the impact that the development would have on house prices, she did have concerns about the height of the turbines.
See next week’s Westmeath Examiner for a full report on the meeting.
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