Independent MEP Nessa Childers has said that the Government will never achieve its renewable targets unless it improves both ‘its approach to public consultation and the planning laws in place to protect local communities and the environment’.
‘There was also a reluctance to engage in a fully transparent and open discussion on the cost benefit of exporting wind energy to the UK.’
‘Both this Government and the previous Fianna Fail Green government pushed ahead with ambitious plans to build large-scale wind turbine infrastructure without adequate planning legislation to ensure local communities, their economies and habitats are not damaged.’
‘In particular, the Green Party has buried its head in the sand about the lack of proper planning and instead paints an unrealistic picture of local grids and job creation. The reality is very different and, as it stands, building these massive turbine developments has always had the potential to create disruption and damage to local communities.’
If Ireland is to play its part in tackling climate change, and it must do, we need a balanced approach which includes energy conservation and the exploring of a wide range of sectoral actions. Wind energy is only part of that solution.