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2001 gas-fired power station at Bellcorick was just a ‘fairytale’

BY MARIAN HARRISON, The Western People

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

THE proposed development in 2001 of a gas-fired electricity-generating station close to Bellacorrick’s power station, has been described by a Castlebar councillor as a “fairytale to ease the passage of the Corrib gas terminal”.

Cllr Harry Barrett has challenged Junior Minister Dara Calleary to explain how the €30m project was lost to the Taoiseach’s constituency in Co Offaly, with a power station almost complete in Ferbane.

“To add insult to injury, the gas fuel needed to feed the station will be piped directly from North Mayo when the Corrib gas comes ashore and satisfies the needs of the local community.

“As we can see it had no basis in reality and was never considered as a proposal.

“With the closure of the Bellacorrick’s power station, the community in North Mayo has had 250 well-paid jobs taken away and handed directly to Brian Cowen’s backyard,” said Cllr Barrett.
Minister Calleary has hit back, stating that over €40 million in government investment came into the very same North Mayo region in 2009.

“We have a very progressive co-executive whom I work with and liaise with on a daily basis in the pursuit of projects for the region that will result in job growth and progression.

“I am confident that many of these will come to fruition,” said the Ballina Deputy.

Minister Calleary also noted that a planning application for a power station in Bellacorrick is live with the council.

“As this application is from a private commercial company, it would not be appropriate for me to comment on it at this time, “ said Minister Calleary.