LEGAL actions brought by An Taisce and others over the manner in which consents were granted for the Corrib gas project have been settled and withdrawn at the High Court. The development has been described as ‘a victory for the environment’.
The settlement was made at the High Court after an eleven-day hearing last week. It includes an agreement by the State to properly transpose aspects of the European Environmental Impact Assessment Directive by the end of the year.
The costs of the actions are expected to exceed €1 million and in a statement An Taisce said its objective was to ensure that what has happened with the Corrib project can never happen again. They said the State has agreed to engage formally with An Taisce in order to ensure that Environmental Law is properly implemented.
An Taisce chairman Charles Stanley Smith said the settlement presented ‘a victory for the environment’ and was likely to set a good precedent.
“An Taisce maintains its position that the manner in which the Corrib Gas Development Project has been consented to and constructed is a travesty of European Environmental Law. That is why An Taisce initiated these judicial review proceedings. For those of you who have fought long and hard for vindication in relation to the manner in which this development proceeded, this is your victory,” Mr Smith said.
An Taisce, together with Peter Sweetman and Monica Muller of Rossport South, Ballina, challenged An Bord Pleanála’s decision last January granting permission to Shell EP Ireland for its third proposed route for the pipeline.