One of the biggest wind farms in Europe has been earmarked for bog land in West Kildare/East Offaly.
Bord na Mona plans to build between 600 and 700 wind turbines across the 20,000 hectares with a planning application expected in 2015. The company hope to have it up and running by 2020.
It became the latest player in the wind energy business in the midlands when it made its Clean Energy Hub announcement last Thursday, October 24. The wind farm will be near Derrinturn, Carbury, Coill Dubh, Timahoe, Allenwood, Lullymore, and Rathangan,
The company is seeking a partner to help finance the project. It is also inviting adjacent landowners to come on board. Bord Na Mona said the project would bring 3,000 to 4,000 construction jobs, 600 posts in spin off supply and sale of goods, and 200 high tech jobs once in operation.
Pat Fitzpatrick from Bord na Mona said it had selected this site because of the vastness and relative remoteness of the cut away bog.
Already residents involved in groups such as Kildangan Against Spin, Rathangan Against Spin and North Kildare Against Spin have raised local concerns about two private companies’ plans to build wind turbines in Kildare.
They are worried how turbines will affect property prices, livestock including thoroughbred horses, people’s health and visual impact.
Although Mainstream’s wind farms will not be located in Kildare, Element Power’s planned 750 185m turbines will be spread over five counties including the same parts of West Kildare.
The firms deny the projects will have any effect on property values, health or livestock.