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Concern as work starts on historic site

23 November, 2017 - by Cathal Boylan

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Energy, Environment and Climate Change Cathal Boylan has expressed his concern that work has begun on a controversial turbine near the Knock Iveagh Cairn burial site in County Down.

Work began after a 28-day stop notice expired but the Newry Armagh MLA is calling for it to be halted pending a public inquiry.

He commented: "I am extremely concerned that work has begun on the controversial wind turbine situated close to the Knock Iveagh Cairn site. There are serious fears that the turbine will have a detrimental impact on the integrity of the historical site.

“The expiration of the 28-day stop notice has allowed construction to begin but Sinn Féin are calling for all work to be suspended until a full public inquiry can be carried out to establish the full impact of the development.

“This is needed due to flaws in the 2013 consultation process which did not engage with experts including archaeologists in the Historic Environment Division of the Department of Communities who have since come out in opposition to the plan to erect a mast on the site. Local residents were also not made fully aware of the consultation process at the time.

“Sinn Féin supports the expansion of renewable energy production that will allow us to cut our over reliance on fossil fuels and move towards a more-sustainable, low carbon society. However, this cannot be at the expense of important heritage sites which have been protected for thousands of years.”.

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