You are making an Observation NOT an Objection
An Bord Pleanála Case reference must be quoted in
Closing date for Observations is May 10th so latest date
for posting is Thursday May 6th
Enclose fee of €50
•Everyone should include support for the 3 grounds for refusal decided by Carlow CoCo in their Observation. Summarised as follows: •Adverse visual impact on the Blackstairs and Mount Leinster Uplands, Very Significant Visual impacts on designated scenic routes and designated protected views. •Potential loss of Annex 1 habitat (Dry Heath), impact on Bat populations in the area, Merlin bird species and other migratory birds. Coillte has not adequately demonstrated that the proposed development would not give rise to ecological and biodiversity impacts on flora and fauna in the area. •Local road network (L2026 Mount Leinster Heritage Drive) does not have adequate capacity and design to accommodate the volume and frequency of HGV traffic. Adverse impact on the local road network, would endanger public safety by reason of a traffic hazard •Also everyone should observe on the impact on Hang gliders/Paragliders who have also lodged an appeal.
LANDSCAPE AND VISUAL KEY FACTS
•The site is directly opposite the Nine Stones Viewing Point and within metres of the Mount Leinster Heritage Drive. •65 acres of forest on the mountain are to be permanently removed with replanting to take place elsewhere • •The Mount Leinster/Blackstairs Uplands landscape is the most important in the County – is Highly Sensitive to change with a Low Capacity to absorb wind farm development. •The Height and Scale of the development would result in a Very Significant Visual Impact on the area – houses within 3km and Significant Visual Impact – houses within 6km. •At 178m, turbines will be the tallest onshore in Ireland. Precedence will be set to upgrade all other turbines within 20km radius to this height. Precedence will be set for further turbines on the other Coillte sites in the area
ROAD NETWORK AND HAULAGE KEY FACTS
•All construction traffic will use the Mount Leinster Heritage Drive, L2026, from Carrigduff up Barkers Road to the site entrance. •Gross understatement of number of HGV loads required for construction. Does not include traffic associated with haulage from felling. •Road closures and disruption to local residents and tourists on scenic route over 18 months. •Road safety concerns – 25 pull-in points identified by Coillte on the road, mostly on private drive-ways/entrances without owners consent and consideration for public safety or private property. •Major road safety issues for all walkers and cyclists as well as vehicles on the road.
HABITATS & BIODIVERSITY KEY FACTS
•Site proximity and impact on the Blackstairs Mountain SAC, the Slaney River Valley SAC, the River Barrow and River Nore SAC. •Location for Turbine 6 is Annex I Habitat European Dry Heath – further fragmentation of the Uplands habitat. • Wide variety of rare and protected species on site and in surrounding area: Merlin, Hen Harrier, Red Grouse, Peregrine Falcon, Kestrel, Goshawk, 7 species of Bats, Otters within 4-5km downstream impacted by water quality . •Migratory route for Endangered species travelling to Wexford Slobs passes over the site. •Threat to salmon spawning grounds and freshwater pearl mussel downstream. • Further loss of habitat through hedgerow removal, felling and vehicle tracks will impact on all species present on site, birds and mammals.
OTHER KEY LOCAL ISSUES
•Hydrology – threat to local water table and wells. Increased run-off rates from Croaghaun. Threat to SACs – Slaney River Valley SAC, River Clody, River Burren, Clashganny, Kildavin Stream, River Barrow and River Nore SAC. •Slope Instability – Evidence of slope failure in the area particularly at Cranemore. •Human Health – threat to water quality, noise attenuation, shadow flicker and indirect health effects. Cumulative impact with Greenoge. • •Economics – No long-term sustainable job creation but impact on existing tourism economy. Impacting on only local natural economic resource in the wider community i.e. natural scenery/wilderness/tourism. •Impact on Tourism and Amenity Value – Huge impact on hang gliders and paragliders, hillwalkers, cyclists, mountaineering groups. Lack of honest, open and meaningful public consultation – information restricted to 2km radius of the site. No real consultation with local stakeholders, questions unanswered. No input into design and siting