The bog train
Tipperary Co. Council has written to Bord na Mona calling on it to develop an economic and environmental plan for the future use of its Littleton briquette factory site and surrounding boglands in the wake of its decision to close the plant next year with the loss of more than 70 jobs.
The Council's elected members unanimously passed a motion requesting the local authority to issue this appeal to Bord na Mona at their June meeting .
Littleton Cllr Sean Ryan (FF) tabled the motion because his constituents were very concerned about the future aftercare of the Bord na Mona site both economically and environmentally.
He said Bord na Mona had not given any indication of its plans for the 10,000 acres of bogland stretching from near Killenaule to Co. Laois that provided the peat for the factory.
They wanted the semi-state to provide an environmental aftercare plan for the factory and bogland.
"We are very frightened the site is going to be left dormant there and open to abuse," he told meeting.
"We are very concerned its going to be left derelict and become a haven for dumping, that it's going to become a haven for illegal settlements and that horses will be put in there. It's a serious issue for us."
Cllr Ryan said the Council should call on Bord na Mona to outline its future economic plans for the factory site and boglands in terms of alternative industries such as solar and wind power that may be established there.
He also wanted Bord na Mona's specific plans in relation to what re-training opportunities would be offered to the briquette factory workforce and its social and economic responsibilities to the area.