Fianna Fáil Councillor and candidate for the Roscommon South Leitrim bye-election Ivan Connaughton has expressed his concerns over the proposed Grid West project and is calling on all high voltage powerlines to be moved underground.
The Grid West Project involves the proposed construction of 100km of overhead high capacity high voltage power lines and pylons through rural Roscommon and Mayo.
Cllr Connaughton commented, “This scale of this power line is built solely for the transportation of energy from North Mayo for export abroad. This project does not merit having these high voltage power lines on land, the safer option is found underground and EirGrid needs to look at this option as the more viable one.
“People in these proposed areas are not happy with the idea of the landscape being cluttered with Pylons and also they have healthy and safety concerns. To put these lines underground is technically and economically feasible. The development of energy infrastructure must be considered carefully, with vision and with an eye on the future.
“I am proposing that Roscommon County Council reopens the county development plan and insist that future 220KV/400KV powerlines are buried underground in Mayo and Roscommon. We need to encourage these high voltage powerlines underground,” said Cllr Connaughton.
There are 23,718 homes on Roscommon, the EirGrid proposed power line will connect to a 400KV power supply- to which no company in Ireland works off.
Companies like Aurivo Dairy Ingredients in Ballaghaderreen, one of the largest consumer of electricity in County Roscommon works off a 110KV power supply.