Inishowen has real wind potential

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Inishowen has the best wind speeds in Europe according to a local community wind farm group.

Speaking at the local Area Electoral meeting last Tuesday, the group said the hoped to benefit from the top class breezes in the peninsula.

A spokesperson from the group told the members they had a different approach to creating wind farms than had been done in the past.

“We want to keep the money and jobs from this in Inishowen, as we believe it could create a knock on effect to other businesses in the local area, in the form of rent to farmers and rates.”

The group say they have a few sites in mind for the erection of the windmills and aim to secure planning for the site soon.The council’s planning officer, Paul Kelly, advised the group to contact themselves sooner rather than later, and work in conjunction with them.

The group hope to gather the support of local councillors as the face a number of hurdles.

“Our biggest block is getting onto the electricity grid, and if we’re not in we can’t be a part of it. We hope to get your support in making a submission to the county development plan to help us lobby the government over the issues around the grid.

“We hope to arrange a meeting with the Minister over this soon.”

The group said there are other models in the country, but they believe their project can have a real benefit in the community.

Buncrana councillor Rena Donaghey welcomed the initiative, saying the strong community links was great.

She said she would give the project her full support and wished them well.

Quigley’s Point councillor Michael Doherty said he knew a lot of people involved in the project and he also would be willing to help in any way.

Moville man Martin Farren said he was happy with the scheme and felt it would create employment in the area.

“I will give you my full support and if I can be of assistance in any way, I’m there,” the Labour Councillor stated.

Burnfoot based councillor John Ryan described the presentation as “very exciting’

“One thing we have in abundance in Inishowen is wind so if we can turn that around and benefit the whole community is good. It’s local people and local faces going to benefit here, however it all depends on the grid.”

The Fine Gael politician said they were 25 years behind the admitted the grid issue would be the biggest obstacle.

Colr Bernard McGuinness said it was absolutely ridiculous they could not get onto the grid and maintained it should be open to anyone.