Westmeath's anti-windfarm campaigners have made 3,000 submissions to the Department of the Environment on its wind energy development guidelines.
Lakelands Windfarm Information Group (LWIG) spokesperson Andrew Duncan told the Westmeath Examiner that he wasn't surprised by the large number of submissions from the county such is the level of opposition locally. The deadline for submissions is today, Friday, February 21.
"The Lakeland group handed in a box (to the Department) with more than 500 submissions, there were 300 or 400 from Rochfortbridge and at least 300 or 400 from Raharney. There are certainly 2,500 to 3,000 submissions from Westmeath alone. You didn't have to persuade anyone, people are very exercised."
While he hopes that "local democracy is respected" and Westmeath County Council is allowed to retain a windfarm set back distance from residential areas of ten times the height of a turbine in its new county development plan, Mr Duncan says that it is "very significant" that the council has been also allowed to keep in Variation 14, put forward by Cllr Peter Burke it states that planners should "strictly" direct industrial windfarms to cutover or cutaway bogs.
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