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27
Wed, May
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Local group raises concerns over Kilbeg bio-med project

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Claremorris group raises concerns over Kilbeg bio-med project


Michael Commins


A local group has expressed serious reservations about the proposed erection of a major biomedical facility in Claremorris. The group contends that the development, if allowed to proceed, will have a negative impact on the town and the surrounding agricultural land.
The proposed 22-acre site for the development is at Kilbeg, Claremorris, beside the N17.
The proposers of the development, Biopharmed West Limited and Imperative Energy, have submitted further information in respect of the planning application. They did so in response to a letter from Mayo County Council seeking further details in relation to the planning permission application submitted in February 2012.
“Biopharmed West Limited is a company that was incorporated in 2012 and has no track record in this area. The development proposed is for a biomedical facility, pellet plant and a CHP plant, which is a combined heat and power plant,” says the statement from the group opposing the plant.
“We cannot believe that this huge facility is proposed to be built right beside the town and farmland. We are confident that the planning permission will be refused, as this plant is completely inappropriate for the site proposed.
“In the request for further information, the planning officer noted that the scale and form of the proposal is immense, and that the design and location of such a facility in the rural area is considered by the county council to be unacceptable.
Back in 2009, the then Tánaiste, Mary Coughlan, spoke at a press conference in the McWilliam Park Hotel held to announce details of the proposed facility. She said the news by the company represented a huge investment in the Claremorris region and was an ‘exciting project’ that would make a major contribution to the regional economy.
Those present that evening were told that those involved in the BioSpark project envisaged it would generate 120 jobs during construction and 180 new high-value jobs within the local and regional economy, with the potential to grow this to 300 jobs within three years.