By Cronan Scanlon
A MAJOR feasibility study is currently underway into the possibility of establishing Ireland’s largest onshore windfarm along the top of the Finn Valley, stretching from near Barnesmore Gap to Killygordon.
Back in January An Bord Pleanala (ABP) was notified by Cork-based Planree Ltd of plans for their proposed development at Carrickduff Hill near Barnesmore and Lismullyduff, outside Killygordon.
No details of the size or scale of the development are publicly available, however, documents seen by the Donegal News reveal the company plan to erect up to 45 massive turbines.
The developers estimate that the total electricity generating output would be between 105 MW – 125 MW, making it Ireland’s largest onshore windfarm.
The current largest windfarm in the country, Meentycat, between Drumkeen and Stranorlar, generates 84 MW.
The proposed site is to include an area from near Barnesmore, running along the border and over an area known as ‘The Glen’ outside Killygordon.
Most of the proposed site would include Coillte owned forestry as well as privately owned hill farms.
This paper also understands that senior Donegal County Council planners and officials have had a number of meetings with representatives of Enerco Energy, of which Planree Ltd is a subsidiary, and their planning agents.
A request to the council seeking details of the meetings had not been responded to at the time of going to press.
Given the scale of the proposed development, it is likely to be considered under procedures for Strategic Infrastructure, meaning that the application may go straight to An Bord Pleanála.
Mr Brian Keville of McCarthy Keville O’Sullivan Ltd, the planning and environmental consultants which has been engaged to carry out the feasibility study, said their site investigations are in the “very early” stages.
See the full report in Friday’s Donegal News