Wicklow County Council may Rethink

There is rumour that the Wicklow County Council is going to rethink the Plan 8 process and withdraw it for the time-being until they have produced an EIS and fixed some of the issues raised.  We understand that this was only to be done last Friday, so (I imagine) they could judge the magnitude of the response and what were the subjects of the complaints.  This will be very welcome news and will hopefully be a step towards resolving this in favour of the River.

This does not mean that we can either stop or let down the pressure but only that we have more time.  For each of your letters that we get from the WCC, we must respond with something like…

We are pleased that you have reconsidered and have listened to the Public on this.  Just to make it clear, an EIS produced by McCarthy Hyder as outlined in your planning documents will not be considered sufficient by the public.  McCarthy Hyder is to closely associated with this scheme to be an unbiased party.  Before submitting this Planing again, we would like a full EIA according to EU Guidelines..

7.2 Where a local authority proposes to carry out development which exceeds the relevant mandatory national EIA threshold, the local
authority is required to seek the approval of An Bord Pleanala to the carrying out of the development.  An EIS must be prepared in all such
cases.  The requirements arise under the Roads Act 1993 and the Roads Regulations 1994 (in the case of road development) and under the
Planning and Development Act 2000 and the Planning and Development Regulations 2001 (in the case of all other developments).

This will give everyone the opportunity to feel that our Riparian Rights are being observed and the EU Protected River Vartry is not harmed in any way.”

The Wicklow County Council have already commissioned an Environmental Study from their contractor McCarthy Hyder and this would not be sufficient.  We are still really seeking that the deciding force on this is not Wicklow County Council but An Bord Pleanala and experts from the Eastern Regional Fisheries Board and the EPA as well as public participation.

February 15 2009 08:10 am | Water Scheme

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