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Independent.ie

Wednesday 20 September 2017

3 wind farms facing High Court challenges

The three separate cases are centered around proposed wind farms in Clare, Offaly and Wexford.
The three separate cases are centered around proposed wind farms in Clare, Offaly and Wexford.

Tim Healy

Three wind farm developments, in Clare, Offaly and Wexford, are facing legal challenges in three separate High Court cases.

Environmental group, "Friends of the Irish Environment Ltd", is challenging a decision by An Bord Pleanala last October to grant permission for a €46m 12-turbine development near Kilmihil, Co Clare.

The developer, Clare Winds Ltd, was given permission to have the case admitted to the fast track commercial division of the High Court Monday (January 15). The case comes back in May.

In the Offaly case, local resident, Brian Kennedy, Stonestown, Cloghan, has challenged the board's decision to give permission to Gaeltacht Energy Cloghan Ltd for nine turbines in Cloghan.

Mr Kennedy claims, among other things the permission was given without a proper environmental impact assessment (EIA) being carried out. It is also near several Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) and Special Protection Areas (SPAs), it is claimed.

In the Wexford case, a group of residents have challenged permission given to Ballinclay Windfarms Ltd for three turbines at Clonroche.

Mr Justice Seamus Noonan granted permission to bring the challenges in the Offaly and Wexford cases. The applications were made on a one-side only (ex-parte) represented basis.  Both cases come back to court in March.

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