All Ireland’s 166 TD’s Contacted by Campaigners

Monday 22 October

All 166 of Ireland’s TDs have been contacted by Save Bantry Bay, a voluntary group campaigning to prevent the expansion of Marine Harvest’s salmon farms in the Bay.
While Save Bantry Bay is a local group, they claim preventing the expansion of salmon farming in Bantry Bay is a national issue. Why? With a history of European Court rulings against Ireland when awarding salmon farm licenses, fish farming is relevant to TDs wherever they’re based. If Ireland wishes to stay out of the European Courts it is vital that European legislation is adhered to.
Sadly, in the case of the proposed Marine Harvest salmon farm in Bantry Bay this has not been the case. The Environmental Impact Statement (EIA) completed by Marine Harvest as part of the licence application has failed to meet standards set by the EU EIA Directive. It has for example:

  1. failed to acknowledge the Dromogowlane River, only 500m away and home to protected species that will be affected
  2. failed to consult a single living resident in the parish (only one was written to and he died 10 years ago)
  3. deemed the majority of houses and residents in the nearby townland not to exist
  4. failed to consider alternative technologies such as the non-polluting closed containment systems
  5. failed to consider alternative sites
  6. failed to assess the ability of the immediate area to flush waste (only last month the Aquaculture Licences Appeals Board overturned Simon Coveney’s decision to grant a mussel farm licence in nearby Dunmanus Bay due to ‘poor flushing rate’ and large amounts of waste)

On top of this, the residents’ concerns related to a failure to adhere to the principles of the Bantry Bay Charter, further loss of fishing grounds, increased pollution, negative impact shellfish industry, the negative impact on six local salmon rivers, and the negative impact on tourism. Instead of providing two new full time jobs, as developers claim, it seems this development may well result in a net loss of jobs in the region. It is for all these reasons – relevant both nationally and locally – that Save Bantry Bay are appealing to the all the countries TDs to get their voices heard.
Further information:

Kieran O’Shea, Chair, Save Bantry Bay 086 128 0303 (mobile)
Tony Lowes, Committee Member, Save Bantry Bay 027 74771 (office) 087 2176316 (mobile)

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