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Hold fire on Dublin Bay wind farm, say councillors

A minister has been called on to delay a decision on a plan to construct up to 145 wind turbines in Dublin Bay.

Labour politicians in Dublin and Wicklow have written to the Junior Environment Minister Jan O'Sullivan, who will decide whether to grant a foreshore licence for the €2bn development.

The councillors, along with the Coastal Concern Alliance, have strong misgivings about the Dublin Array project.



If given the go-ahead, renewable power firm Saorgus Energy would begin construction on the Kish and Bray Banks, 10km off the coast, in five years.

Saorgus, a Kerry-based Irish-owned firm, has produced an environmental impact statement (EIS).

Each turbine would be 100m tall.

Dublin city councillor Dermot Lacey (Lab) said the application raised concerns over the visual impact the development would have on the Dublin and Wicklow coastlines.

In a letter in April, Saorgus notified Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown county manager Owen Keegan of a public consultation period for the project, running until June 11, after which Ms O'Sullivan must decide whether to issue the licence.

The Labour councillors said the legislation under which foreshore licences are granted is outdated.

"There is no statutory involvement for the Dublin and Wicklow local authorities and hence no real opportunity for elected representatives and the public to have their voices heard," they added.

"As far as we are aware, only Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown councillors were formally made aware of the project ... even through this project will have an impact on citizens living in Wicklow right up to Fingal County Council."

The councillors want a decision to be delayed until after new foreshore licence legislation has been introduced.

The plans are on display at the public libraries in Dun Laoghaire and Howth, as well as the garda stations in Bray and Greystones.