Anti-pylons group claims overhead cables ‘likely option’

Protesters at an anti-pylons protest in the past, including Labour Party Senator Denis Landy.
An alliance of 40 community groups campaigning against the controversial Gridlink powerline project being located in their areas, has highlighted that high voltage overhead pylons remain Eirgrid’s preferred option for the project.

An alliance of 40 community groups campaigning against the controversial Gridlink powerline project being located in their areas, has highlighted that high voltage overhead pylons remain Eirgrid’s preferred option for the project.

The Pylon Alternative Alliance, which represents five anti-pylon community groups in Co, Tipperary, has appealed to concerned residents along the routes being considered for Gridlink to make submissions and objections to Eirgrid’s latest round of public consultation before the new deadline date of this Friday, June 5.

Eirgrid announced in April it was examining the feasibility of upgrading some of the existing transmission lines as an alternatie to the overhead powerline and underground options for GridLink. This new €200m option along with the €800m underground and €500m overhead power line options are outlined in Eirgrid’s new draft strategy: “Your Grid, Your Views, Your Tomorrow” and Eirgrid invited the public to examine it and submit their views to the company by May 22.

That submissions deadline has now been extended to June 5 but the Pylon Alternative Alliance described the two week extension of the deadline as “unacceptable” and “farcical”.

PAA Chairman Kieran Connors said many residents were under the impression the issue had been sorted but it certainly was not.

“EirGrid have provided three options – overhead, underground and using the existing network but, and this is the key point, their preferred route is still the 400kV high voltage overhead pylon route.

“We are appealing to residents to make their submissions and objections known before the public consultation deadline of Friday June 5.”

“The eight week public consultation and submission time-frame is simply ludicrous when you consider the technical detail contained in EirGrid’s 200 page draft development document. This totally unrealistic time-frame is stifling inquiry.

Following our repeated requests for a reasonable and meaningful time-frame, at the last hour they granted just two weeks The public consultation deadline is totally unrealistic for creating meaningful and effective engagement,” Mr Connors added.

Carrick-on-Suir Against Pylons, Save County Tipperary, Faugheen Against Pylons, Sliabh na mBan + all and the Suir Valley Action Group are the Co Tipperary community groups involved in the Pylon Alternative Alliance.

People wishing to make a submission can log on to http://www.eiropinion.org/#templates.html where they can access a template or they can write up their own submission and email it to yourgridyourviews@eirgrid.com or mail a hard copy to YourGrid Your Views, Eirgrid, The Oval, 160 Shelbourne Road, Ballsbridge Dublin 4.