Two High Court challenges over wind farm set to have some of the 'highest structures in the country'

Stock photo
Stock photo

Tim Healy

Two separate High Court challenges have been launched against An Bord Pleanala's decision to grant planning permission for a wind farm which will have some of the "highest structures in the country".

The actions have been brought against the board's decision to grant permission to Coole Windfarm Ltd for a 13 turbines wind farm on peatlands near the village of Coole in northwest Co Westmeath, near the border with Co Longford.

The first of the actions have been brought by a local residents groups, the North Westmeath Turbine Action Group, and the North Westmeath Turbine Action  Group Company Ltd by Guarantee. 

The second has been brought by environmental campaigner Peter Sweetman. Both seek various orders and declarations, including an order quashing the board's decision to the project the go ahead. 

They claim that the decision to grant permission is not consistent with EU directives on Habitats and Environmental Impact Assessments. 

The court heard the turbines, which have a tip height of 175m, were "almost three times the height of Liberty Hall in Dublin," and if built would be some of the highest structures in the country."

Permission to bring the challenges against was granted, on a one side only represented application by Mr Justice Seamus Noonan. The cases come back in July.

In another legal challenge, Mr Sweetman is also objecting to a national grid connection to a wind farm in Co Wicklow.

Get the latest news from the Farming Independent team 3 times a week.

That case came before the Commercial Court on Monday.

Mr  Sweetman is seeking to quash a December last decision of An Bord Pleanála in December that the construction of the connection servicing a windfarm development at Ballycumber, Tinahealy, Co Wicklow was exempted development.

The case was admitted to the fast track commercial list by Mr Justice Robert Haughton who adjourned the matter to October.

Online Editors

For Stories Like This and More
Download the Free Farming Independent App