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Another whitewash by the Irish Courts on Corrib Pipeline

questforjustice2011 -

A number of legal challenges around the legality of numerous aspects of the Corrib gas pipeline have been struck out of the Commercial Court in Dublin.

The challenges were brought by local residents Peter Sweetman and Monica Muller and An Taisce against An Bord Pleanála’s decision in January to grant permission to Shell E&P Ireland for its third proposed route for the pipeline.

They claimed the proposed pipeline crossed several areas of special interest in Co Mayo that were protected by the EU Habitats Directive.

They were also challenging consents for the construction of the sections issued by the former Minister for Energy, Pat Carey, and current Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan.

And An Taisce was challenging a foreshore licence issued by Mr Hogan this year.

All the proceedings have been struck out. It said, in view of the concerns of An Taisce and their interest in the full transposition and effective implementation of European environmental law, the State has agreed to establish an Environmental Law Implementation group through which there will be formal engagement by the State with An Taisce.The State has also agreed to make a contribution to An Taisce’s legal costs.

The State also acknowledged that Ireland had failed to transpose properly certain aspects of the Environmental Impact Assessment Directive. It was now intended all of the necessary transposition measures would be taken by the end of 2011.
In a statement, An Taisce said it maintained its position that the manner in which the Corrib Gas Development Project had been consented to and constructed was a travesty of European environmental law.

It said the State had proposed a settlement to An Taisce. It said at the heart of the settlement was a commitment from the Government to complete outstanding legislative transposition and to engage directly with An Taisce to address compliance with European environmental law.

It said the critical objective for An Taisce was to ensure what happened in the Corrib project could never happen again.

An Taisce said had the cases continued, it believed further litigation to the Supreme Court would have followed and possibly further planning applications. It said the State had settled the case rather than continue to defend it.

It said this was a singular concrete acknowledgement of the group’s grievances in respect of the Corrib project, no matter how much the State continued to assert the validity of the consents or justify what they did today.

Comment by Mike Cunningham-Former director Statoil E&P Ireland Ltd.

The good people of the Barony of Erris, and indeed our people as a whole, have once again been shamefully sold out. Alas, one has come to expect the “soup takers” cloaked involvement in what surely must be the the most corrupt infrastructural project in the history of our Nation.


Posted Date: 
1 November 2011