North Kerry people urged to look at alternative

Kate Carmody
Kate Carmody

RATHER than to pinning their hopes on the liquid natural gas (LNG) plant that is proposed for the Ballylongford Landbank, north Kerry people should be looking to a different type of industry altogether, one that could create sustainable jobs and help clean up the environment, according to local election candidate Kate Carmody.

Ms Carmody does not believe the Shannon LNG plant, which is still locked in legal uncertainty, would be a cure-all for the region's economic woes.

"The LNG plant makes no sense in a global commodity market, where higher prices are available elsewhere for liquid natural gas. The construction of a plant such as this is specialised work and would involve contracted workers rather than drawing on the local workforce and the proposed 50 final jobs would again be specialised and therefore mainly outsourced," she said.

However, she added that an anaerobic digester plant would represent a 'viable' industry that 'serves the community and is far more acceptable than the investor-driven wind farm proposals."

The award-winning cheese producer from Beale was part of a committee that carried out a feasibility study 10 years ago on the possibility of siting an 'anaerobic digester' plant on the landbank. That study found the proposal 'feasible, logical and practical'.

An industrial scale anaerobic digester could process large amounts of waste, producing methane that could be used to generate electricity or as a fuel. Residual waste from the process could be used as a compost fertilizer.