first_imgThe scene of the turbine crash. No investigationMINISTER Pat Rabbitte is refusing to hold an investigation into the collapse of a wind turbine at Loughderryduff in west Donegal.His refusal came in response to a question in the Dail from TD Pearse Doherty.“I am very disappointed with the Minister’s response when asked if he would order a public investigation into the recent collapse of the wind turbine in Portnoo,” said Doherty today. “The Minister clearly considers that this incident does not warrant a public investigation by his Department and is content to have the matter investigated by the Health and Safety Authority, which has no role in the determination of windfarm development policy.“I find it astounding that the Minister informs us that his Department is undertaking a review of the wind energy guidelines in order to address “key issues of community concern” when a community in Donegal is still awaiting answers two months on in relation to an incident of huge concern, which luckily did not cause any harm to persons, property or livestock on this occasion.“Can the Minister provide assurances that such a similar incident will not occur in future?“It is unfortunate also that the Minister did not take this opportunity to clarify his intentions with regards to the introduction of a legislative framework for the development of windfarms, in particular in relation to the issue of a minimum setback distance from dwellings. “The recent decision of An Bórd Pleanála to overturn a planning application for the development of a windfarm in Strathboy, after an ongoing campaign by the local community opposing the development, demonstrates the lack of clarity that surrounds this issue.“I am calling on the Minister to implement a moratorium on the development of windfarms until an appropriate legislative framework is put in place after public consultation with all relevant stakeholders, including local communities.”Minister Rabbitte gave a written response.In it, he said: “Ensuring sustainable supplies of power to all consumers is central to this Government’s energy policy. Harnessing the clean, sustainable, indigenous, renewable wind resource that Ireland is fortunate to have in abundance is crucial to reducing our dependence on expensive fossil fuels imports, reducing harmful emissions and delivering growth in the green economy.“In order to develop a more sustainable electricity supply, Ireland is committed to reaching a target of 40% of electricity demand being met from renewable sources by 2020. It is forecast that the bulk of this demand will be met by onshore wind. “The issue of planning approval for wind farms is in the first instance a matter for developers and the planning authority under the Planning Acts, which include requirements for public consultation. In addition, best practice Wind Energy Guidelines were published in 2006. Currently, the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government – in conjunction with my Department and other stakeholders – is undertaking a targeted review of certain aspects of these guidelines. The review will examine the manner in which the guidelines address key issues of community concern to ensure that wind energy does not have negative impacts on local communities.“With regard to the incident referred to by the Deputies, I understand that the Health and Safety Authority was notified of its occurrence and that the Authority has instigated an investigation into the incident from an occupational safety and health perspective in accordance with their statutory remit. This investigation is currently on going.”MINISTER WON’T INVESTIGATE DONEGAL WIND TURBINE COLLAPSE – TD was last modified: June 20th, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:MINISTER WON’T INVESTIGATE DONEGAL WIND TURBINE COLLAPSE – TDlast_img

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