Oweninny Windfarm

  • The Mullarkey family, Eileen, Alan and their five children are living along a road being used for access into and out of the construction site of the huge wind farm that is under construction in Bellacorrick.

     The windfarm is being developed by the ESB and Bord na Mona.

    At yesterday’s monthly meeting of Mayo county council, councillors outlined the problems that families, like the Mullarkeys, living beside such construction sites are facing and called on Mayo county council as the planning authority to listen and to respond to the disruption that such major construction can cause.

    Independent Ballina councillor Gerry Ginty initially raised the concerns of the families living closest to the windfarm site in Bellacorrick yesterday.

    Alan and Eileen Mullarkey and others were in the public gallery during the discussion – and afterwards spoke to Midwest News.

     They described their situation as a nightmare, saying it was impacting on their lives daily.

     They had concerns for their children’s safety with the constant movement of large lorries along their small rural road. They also had issues  with constant heavy dust and noise and they called on Mayo county council as the planning enforcer to ensure that the developers meet the conditions imposed on them in their planning permission.

    Councillor Michael Loftus, was among a number of councillors who called on the local authority as the planning enforcer to engage with the residents.

    The CEO of Mayo county council Peter Hynes told the meeting that yesterday was the first time that concerned residents had sought a meeting with Mayo county council and he said discussions between the sides will now continue – he said engagement between all sides was necessary and will continue and he hoped could be resolved.

  • A Mayo Fine Gael Senator has appealed to Bord na Mona and the ESB to talk directly to the residents living near the Oweninny wind farm and accept the principle that those communities living closest to the turbines should receive special benefits.

    Senator Mulherin says while the operational fund of €232,000 per annum for community benefit projects is welcome, it is a pre-requisite that Bord na Mona and ESB accept the principle that those communities living closest to the wind turbines should benefit in a special and particular way.

    Senator Mulherin was reacting to letters she has received from the project's joint developers, Bord na Mona and the ESB, in response to her representations calling for a financial acknowledgment for those living directly beside the 29 wind turbines which are due to start producing electricity in 2019.

    She says it is not good enough for ESB and Bord na Mona to pass the buck over to the Council by stating that they have asked Mayo County Council to commence the establishment of this fund as soon as possible. She says as the developers they should be to the fore in resolving this issue with the concerned residents on the ground. Mayo County Council is not stopping them from doing so.

    Senator Mulherin says that the community living near Owenniny are frustrated and disappointed to date that this is not being recognised in their dealings with and the response of these two State companies. 

  • Three, 200 foot blades for the Oweninny wind farm development in north Mayo will for the first time be carried over road, from Killybegs in Donegal through Ballina and Crossmolina  late on Sunday night next into the early hours of Monday morning .

    The huge cargo will travel with police escort and is likely to disrupt traffic along the route while in transit.

    Signs have been erected along the route in recent days to advise road users.

    Local councillor Michael Loftus told Midest News today that  it will be an interesting undertaking and is likely to cause some inconvenience locally, but added that due to the times that the cargo will be en route it should minimise disruption.

    Large blades and turbines will continue to be transported along this rout on a regular basis between next Sunday night and the end of next month (Feb).