Hogan urged to review turbine levy guidelines

T.D Sean Fleming.
Fianna Fail TD, Sean Fleming wants the Minister of Environment to review his development contribution guidelines for wind turbines which are not which are not supplying electricity to the national grid.

Fianna Fail TD, Sean Fleming wants the Minister of Environment to review his development contribution guidelines for wind turbines which are not which are not supplying electricity to the national grid.

Deputy Fleming called on Minister Phil Hogan TD, to immediately amend the guidelines for Planning Authority in respect of Development Contributions which he issued to all Local Authorities in January of this year.

He questioned why these guidelines require Local Authorities to consider reduced or no planning development contributions in respect of wind turbines which are not supplying electricity to the National Grid.

“It is absolutely clear that the main beneficiaries of such a requirement are two companies: Element Power and Mainstream who are each planning up to 750 Wind Turbines in the midland counties of Laois, Offaly, Kildare, Longford and Westmeath,” he said.

Deputy Fleming asked why the Minister included this proposal which can only substantially benefit these two companies.

This arrangement is not available to local companies who are establishing wind farms for connection to the Irish National Grid.

Deputy Fleming continued: “Based on the Development Contribution Scheme as adopted for example by Laois County Council recently this would have resulted in development levies of the order of 4% of the project cost to be paid to Local Authorities.

“Element Power say they intend spending €8bn to generate 3,000 megawatts of electricity using approximately 750 wind turbines. With development levies of €50,000 per wind turbine this would have yielded €37.5m to the Local Authorities from this company alone.”