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Report suggests Corrib pipeline could fail

A report published today by the Centre for Public Inquiry into the €900 million Corrib gas project says the controversial gas pipeline carries a real and substantial risk of failure because of its potential to operate at extremely high pressures.
The report, prepared by a leading US consultant, says the pipeline as currently planned is being placed in unacceptably close proximity to dwelling houses along its route in Co Mayo.
However, the report stops short of saying that Shell E&P Ireland should build an offshore terminal.
The Centre for Public Inqury is a non-governmental agency which investigates issues of public and corporate interest and this latest report is highly critical of the Corrib gas project.
US pipeline expert Richard Kuprewicz said the 9km pipeline which will take gas from the offshore field to a planned terminal at Bellanaboy needs to be radically overhauled.
He said it has a uniquely large rupture impact zone with a potential for high fatalities.
Mr Kuprewicz said there are too many unknowns in relation to the future running of the pipeline and he believes that the difficulties of locating the gas terminal offshore have been overstated.
Mr Justice Feargus Flood, who chairs the Centre for Public Inquiry, said the faindings of the report should be taken seriously.
He said the concerns raised are 'very serious' and need to be dealt with and solved satisfactorily so that the project can be brought forward safely.
The Shell-to-Sea campaign group has welcomed the report. It said it supports the claims it has been making.
Shell Ireland is believed to be studying the findings.

Posted Date: 
21 August 2006 - 1:09am