Parts of rural Ireland are up in arms at the prospect of an army of huge pylons running through the countryside. Co Wexford in particular has reason to be concerned as the company charged with the task of delivering additional power infrastructure plans to bring power lines north from the power station at Great Island up by New Ross and on up by Bunclody. As things stand EirGrid plans to run these high-power lines between pylons endeavouring, where possible, not to get to close to houses. While the World Health Organisation says that there are “no substantive health issues involved” (from radiation) I know that I would not be happy to have these power lines anywhere within an ass’s roar of me. The fact that the proposed pylons will disfigure beautiful unspoilt areas of the county goes against efforts to further exploit Wexford’s reputation as a favourite with tourists. Many people along the proposed routes are also concerned about the negative impact on property values. In fact there are some near Bunclody who feel particularly aggrieved that that they are being asked to take pylons in the neighbourhood having already been the recipients of enormous wind turbines.
EirGrid says that this massive €500 million “Grid Link Project” is something which will bring long-term energy and economic benefits to the country. The project, which links the national electricity grid between Leinster and Munster, “consists of a new high voltage overhead power line linking Knockraha in Co. Cork to Great Island in Co. Wexford to Dunstown, near Kilcullen, in Co. Kildare ensuring a reliable and high quality electricity supply for homes, farms and businesses in the south and east region for the future”. The benefits, they say, include:
• Helping to secure a future electricity supply for Leinster and Munster
• Providing a platform for job creation in the south and east of Ireland
• Helping to enable Ireland meet its 40% renewable electricity target
• Facilitating possible electricity links with either Britain or France.
The deadline for submissions was Nov 26, 2013.