Environmental protection

FuturEnergy Ireland takes pride in its leadership position among wind farm developers in Ireland. We work hard to ensure that we are best in class and that our developments reflect this. Environmental protection including biodiversity are at the core of our sustainable business processes from commercial forestry through to wind farm development. We ensure that our projects conform to or exceed all statutory requirements and best practice guidelines in relation to environmental protection.

Within the Carlow County Development Plan 2015-2021, the study area is partially classified as open to consideration for wind development. No Natural Heritage Areas (NHA’s) occur within a 15km radius of the study area boundary. The following European Designated sites lie with a 15km radius:

  • Blackstairs Mountains SAC (0.5km)
  • River Slaney SAC (1.6km)
  • River Barrow and Nore SAC (6.7km)

Hydrological connectivity exists between the western part of the study area boundary and the Slaney River Valley SAC.

A copy of the project EIAR Scoping Report can be found here.

Coillte and Climate Change

As Ireland’s largest landowner with more than 440,000 hectares under their management – and one half of FuturEnergy Ireland –  Coillte has a large part to play in the Ireland’s journey toward carbon neutrality.  To learn more about Coillte’s management practices, see the articles linked below;

Coillte champions Biodiversity: https://www.coillte.ie/our-forests/public-goods/biodiversity/

Coillte champions native woodland: https://www.coillte.ie/coillte-announces-investment-in-native-woodland-restoration-in-sligo/

Coillte Biodiversity Seminar:        https://www.coillte.ie/coillte-host-biodiversity-breakfast-seminar/

Coillte forest and activities:         https://www.coillte.ie/our-forests/explore/activities/

Benefits from Coillte forests:      https://www.coillte.ie/our-forests/public-goods/

Coillte’s and climate change:       https://www.coillte.ie/our-forests/public-goods/climate-change/

Coillte supports national Tree week 2019: https://www.coillte.ie/coillte-encourage-ireland-to-get-behind-national-tree-week-2019/

Tree council of Ireland & Coillte:                https://treecouncil.ie/testt/

Estimated Project Development Time

Apr 2019

Community and Stakeholder Engagement process is ongoing, Shane recruited as CLO.

May 2019

Environmental Impact Assessment baseline studies begin.

Oct 2019

Iterative design process commences using feedback from Environmental studies including grid route. Draft layouts shared with nearest neighbours.

Jan 2020

Ongoing community engagement with project team, technical experts and near neighbours throughout January and February.

Feb 2020

Ongoing community engagement with project team, technical experts and near neighbours throughout January and February.

Mar 2020

• Preparing Project Update newsletter and 2nd design iteration layouts.
• Workshop with nearest neighbours postponed due to Covid-19 Public Health restrictions.
• All project updates and communications posted on website.

Apr 2020

• Ongoing EIA studies, surveys and site investigations with emphasis on geology.

• Project updates provided through alternative means of engagement available to our nearest neighbours.

May 2020

• Preparing Project Update newsletter and 3rd design iteration layouts.
• Ongoing on-site EIAR survey investigations coming to a conclusion.
• Ongoing engagement with nearest neighbours through alternative means available as required.

Jun 2020

Ongoing engagement with nearest neighbours through alternative means available.

Nov 2020

EIAR and Planning documentation being finalised.

Jan 2021

Planning Application submitted to Carlow County Council - 15th January 2021.

Apr 2021

Planning application turned down by Carlow County Council.

May 2021

Appeal submitted to An Bord Pleanála by Coillte Renewable Energy (now FuturEnergy Ireland).

Nov 2021

Request for Further Information (RFI) received from An Bord Pleanála.

Feb 2022

All RFI documentation submitted to An Bord Pleanála.