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Friday, January 27, 2023

‘No imminent decision on the LNG plant’ – Bord

NO decision on the €650 million Shannon LNG gas plant application before An Bord Pleanála will be made in the near future, the appeals board expects.

n Bord Pleanála also told The Kerryman this week that it has not made any decision as of yet on whether or not it will hold an oral hearing into the massive plan.

The gas plant would form the first phase of the proposed Shannon Technology and Energy Park, comprising a 600MW power plant, a liquid natural gas terminal and a 120MW ‘one-hour ultra fast response battery storage facility’.

The only heat it has so far generated has been felt within the raging climate debate, with environmentalists fiercely opposed to a plan they fear would see fracked gas imported into a state that has banned the abstraction method.

And they say it would lock Ireland further into fossil fuel at a time when the State needs to be divesting fast.

Support for the plant is substantial locally, with hundreds of signatories and organisations submitting positive observations on the plan. They maintain the project would transform the economy of the region – one of the most disadvantaged areas in the State in terms of jobs and household incomes.

It’s against the background of these competing third-party attitudes that interest in the application rages. There was some speculation during the week that An Bord had moved to convene an oral hearing into the strategic infrastructure plan.

Not so, according to the appeals board who told The Kerryman:

“The position at present is that work is continuing and it is not expected that a decision will be made in the near future.

“It is still open to the Board to direct the holding of an oral hearing and no final decision has been taken on that matter as yet.”

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