Pylon plans face opposition in south Kildare

A community group has slammed Eirgrid’s proposal to build a €500m high voltage overhead line from Dunstown, Kilcullen to Cork.

A community group has slammed Eirgrid’s proposal to build a €500m high voltage overhead line from Dunstown, Kilcullen to Cork.

Alternatives must be found such as underground cabling, say the Gridlink Advisory Group (GAG). It said up to 650 people attended the public meeting on September 30 at St. Laurence’s GAA complex.

GAG outlined; “During the course of the meeting disappointment was expressed at the failure of Eirgrid to communicate with people who may be directly affected by the proposed routes, and to engage in a meaningful way with individuals on items such as alternative solutions, impact on health, concern for the environment and the visual impact on the countryside not to mention the absolute absence of any costing having been undertaken with regard to the available alternatives. “

Concern was expressed about possible links between overhead lines and leukaemia.

EirGrid said it had identified 1km-wide route options, which will be narrowed down during the middle of next year. It said approximately 300 people attended the open day at Kilcullen Heritage Centre. John Lowry, Grid Link Project Manager said the company had tried it’s best to communicate with the public through 33 open days, 120 information events, local and national media and its 12 information centres.

He said Eirgrid had looked at the underground option but it had proved unviable because of the risks associated with putting AV electricity underground along with technical, operational and financial considerations.

In response to the concerns about childhood leukaemia, he stressed; “It has been proven that there are no adverse affects on health in relation to overhead lines,” he added.