The Kerryman (North Kerry) - - NEWS - By DÓ­NAL NOLAN

AN Bord Pleanála has given Ir­ish Wa­ter the go-ahead for the con­struc­tion of the long-awaited Kil­cum­min waste wa­ter sys­tem much to the re­lief of the lo­cal­ity where in­or­di­nate de­lays in the scheme have stymied hous­ing de­vel­op­ment and even im­pacted the state of the roads.

The ap­peals Board up­held Kerry County Coun­cil’s de­ci­sion to grant plan­ning per­mis­sion to the project in a de­ci­sion last week. The Board con­sid­ered the mat­ter fol­low­ing an ap­peal of the Coun­cil’s de­ci­sion lodged in April by In­land Fish­eries Ire­land.

In­land Fish­eries Ire­land flagged its fears about the project’s po­ten­tially de­struc­tive im­pact on the fish­eries of Lough Leane and the Deenagh River. The scheme will see Ir­ish Wa­ter build­ing a pump­ing sta­tion in Kil­cum­min, which is to in­clude an emer­gency over­flow to the ad­ja­cent water­course which dis­charges into the Deenagh within the Kil­lar­ney Na­tional Park, MacGil­ly­cuddy’s Reeks and Caragh River Catch­ment Spe­cial Area of Con­ser­va­tion (SAC 000365). It is also to com­prise a grav­ity sewer that would cross the Deenagh with the same SAC site.

In­land Fish­eries Ire­land based its ap­peal on what it ar­gued was the ‘ in­ad­e­quacy of in­for­ma­tion’ pro­vided in the plans; the po­ten­tial im­pacts on the qual­ity of the wa­ter of the Deenagh and Lough Leane, ar­gu­ing that the Deenagh River lo­cated within the SAC rep­re­sents a very im­por­tant spring salmon fish­ery ‘ with spawn­ing and nurs­ery habi­tats through­out its length’.

It said that the wa­ter qual­ity of Lough Leane, while hav­ing im­proved in re­cent years, re­mains highly vul­ner­a­ble to nu­tri­ents. IFI also ar­gued that the Natura Im­pact State­ment sub­mit­ted with the plan for the project did not demon­strate ‘ that risk to wa­ter qual­ity will not oc­cur’, re­quest­ing fur­ther in­for­ma­tion.

An Bord Pleanála con­sid­ered the Nat­u­ral Im­pact State­ment and all other rel­e­vant as­pects of the sub­mis­sion in full. “In over­all con­clu­sion, the Board was sat­is­fied that the pro­posed de­vel­op­ment would not ad­versely af­fect the in­tegrity of the Euro­pean Sites in view of the sites’ con­ser­va­tion ob­jec­tives,” it ruled last week. It up­held the Coun­cil per­mis­sion on two con­di­tions:

That the de­vel­op­ment be car­ried out and com­pleted in ac­cor­dance with the plans and that all ‘mit­i­ga­tion’ mea­sures out­lined in the NIS be im­ple­mented in full’.

Deputy Danny Healy Rae was among the first to wel­come the news this week, say­ing he was ‘glad’ to learn of the Board’s de­ci­sion on the mat­ter.

Front, from left: Muiris Ó hAoire (Board of Man­age­ment), Breda O’Dwyer (Prin­ci­pal), Norma O’Car­roll, Rita Gould­ing and Mau­rice O’Con­nor.

Teach­ers and Board of Man­age­ment at Sli­abh a’Mhadra wish­ing Norma O’Car­roll all the best on her re­tire­ment af­ter 32 years’ ser­vice. Back, from left:

Mary Wal­lace, Cathal White, Sinead Pierse, Sarah Ross, Ma­jella Egan, Denise Wren, Anne White (Sec), Elaine But­ler and Re­becca Spell­man.

Deputy Danny Healy Rae said he was ‘glad’ to hear of the de­ci­sion on the Kil­cum­min sewer.

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