Very little faith locally in Bord na Mona jobs announcement - Offaly TD
Independent TD for Laois Offaly Carol Nolan has said the claim by Bord na Mona that it will create 885 jobs in the midlands over the next five years has been greeted with a large degree of scepticism and outright disbelief in communities right across the constituency.
Deputy Nolan was speaking after Bord na Mona CEO Tom Donnellan announced at Cloncreen Wind Farm that an estimated 1,100 jobs will be generated nationally by Bord na Móna, with 335 of these to be created through partnerships with third-party companies. He was joined by the Taoiseach Micheál Martin and the Minister for the Environment Eamon Ryan last week for the announcement.
“Most ordinary workers and families listening to the recent announcement by Bord na Mona will not have greeted this with the kind of unrestrained enthusiasm that the company was hoping for," Deputy Nolan claimed.
"Instead, they will have looked to the history of Bord na Mona’s actions over the last number of years and realised that here is a company that has reneged and back-tracked on firm commitments regarding the time period of the Just Transition strategy, bringing it down from a manageable ten year period to a few months, irrespective of the impact on employment that this decision brought about," she added.
"They will have remembered the kind of treatment that part-time peat contractors received, and they will have seen the capitulation of the company to an incoherent green agenda that, even as we speak, is threatening 17,000 jobs in the horticulture sector.
"Is that what a commitment to generating rural employment in renewables and the circular economy looks like?
"Bord na Mona also say that many of these jobs will supposedly be created in operations like wind farms.
"But the fact of the matter is this; there is simply no way that these jobs or wind farms can be guaranteed when you factor in the right of local people to protest about their location and the complexity of our planning process.
"The unfortunate reality is this; very many people in Offaly, Laois and the wider Midlands region have lost faith in Bord na Mona. They simply do not believe that company is genuinely out to protect their interest.
"The announcement by Mr Donnellan and the gloss put on it by Taoiseach Martin and Minister Ryan will have done absolutely nothing to diminish that plain fact,” concluded Deputy Nolan.
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