Carrick on Suir solar farm - planning appeal decision due next week

Application for second Carrick solar farm submitted to Co. Council

Aileen Hahesy

Reporter:

Aileen Hahesy

Solar Farm

An Bord Pleanala will rule early next week on the appeal of permission granted for a solar farm near Carrick-on-Suir while a planning application for a second solar farm nearby has been submitted to Tipperary Co. Council.

An Bord Pleanala is due to reach a decision next Tuesday, September 12 on whether to confirm or overturn the planning approval for Solar Sense SPC's solar farm proposed for the townlands of Ballynagrana and Deerparklodge, Carrick-on-Suir.

Meanwhile, Tipperary Co. Council received a new application from a firm called Carrick SLR Ltd on August 23 seeking permission to develop a solar farm on a 9.12 hectacre site at Deerpark, Carrick-on-Suir.

Kerry-based Solar Sense SPV 1 Ltd was granted conditional permission in February to construct 36,500 square metres of solar panels on ground mounted frames for its Carrick-on-Suir solar farm.

The project would involve the construction of 6 inverters housed in three units, a 20kv sub-station, security fencing, a new entrance onto the public road, CCTV underground cable ducts including cable and ducts along the public road to the entrance of the existing Deerpark substation at Deeparklodge.

The permission granted was for 10 years.

The Co. Council received 30 public submissions from local residents, businesses, State bodies and agencies in relation to the proposed project while it was going through the planning application process so it was no surprise the Council's decision was appealed.

Local residents Brigid Dalton, Ed Hogan and Maria Meany appealed the Council's decision to an Bord Pleanala on February 28.

Objections they have raised to the project proceeding include concerns the solar panels would have a negative visual impact on the surrounding area, significantly devalue surrounding properties and cause significant sun reflection on surrounding premises.

Their submissions have also voiced concerns over possible pollution of groundwater from the solar panels as well as damage to the soil and fears of significant rain run off from the panels increasing the Glen River's flooding problem.

In relation to the new solar farm proposal, the Co Council says a decision on whether to approve, reject or seek further information on the Carrick SLR application is due to be made on October 17.

According to the application, the solar farm will have a capacity of 3.6MW, solar panels on ground mounted frames no taller than 2.8m, two inverter/transformer container units, a battery storage container unit, a 20kv on-site sub-station, CCTV cameras, underground cable and ducts connecting to the off-site Deerpark ESB sub-station.