Public anger in Carrick-on-Suir over proposed power line

Aileen Hahesy

Reporter:

Aileen Hahesy

A public meeting is being organised in Carrick-on-Suir this Sunday to form a protest group to campaign to ensure a new €500m Eirgrid overhead power line carried by 45m high pylons doesn’t go through rural communities in the town’s hinterland.

A public meeting is being organised in Carrick-on-Suir this Sunday to form a protest group to campaign to ensure a new €500m Eirgrid overhead power line carried by 45m high pylons doesn’t go through rural communities in the town’s hinterland.

It’s the first of several protest groups expected to be formed in South Tipperary over the coming months to oppose any plan to locate a section of the grid link power line through their areas.

Eirgrid has identified a number of feasible 1km wide route corridor options for the 400kv power line linking substations in Knockraha, Cork with Dunstown near Kilcullen, Co. Kildare via Great Island in Wexford. The company is in the middle of a three month public consultation process in relation to these option.

Two of the proposed route corridor options go through South Tipperary; one goes through communities surrounding Carrick-on-Suir while the other route passes near the Mitchelstown Caves, Ballyporeen, goes north of Burncourt and south of Cahir and swings north of Clonmel. The public meeting in Carrickbeg Community Hall in Carrick-on-Suir between 3pm and 5pm on Sunday is being organised by Independent town councillor Pierce O’Loughlin.

He said he didn’t want the power line in the Carrick-on-Suir area because of the unsightly visual impact of the three-storey high pylons on the landscape, his concerns about the impact on the value of properties near them and concerns about their impact on public health. The other South Tipperary route corridor goes through farmer Jimmy Ryan’s land near Darcy’s Cross, Poulmucka.

He will be among the landowners in his area making submissions to Eirgrid highlighting how unsuitable their area is for the power line. He echoed the concerns of Cllr O’Loughlin and is also worried about the buzzing noise pollution from the pylons as well as their impact on the health of agricultural livestock. A website called www.pylon.projects.ie and associated Facebook page Save County Tipperary has been set up as a forum for South Tipperary people opposed to the project.