Independent Media Centre Ireland

Second Save Our Scenery! gig in Leo's Tavern

category donegal | environment | press release author Friday May 28, 2010 19:11author by Donegal ATP - Alternatives to Pylons Donegalauthor email donegalatp at gmail dot com

The second 'Save Our Scenery!' concert to benefit Donegal Alternatives to Pylons will take place in Leo's Tavern, Meenaleck, Donegal on June 3rd, 2010 and
will feature Brian Kennedy, The Celtic Tenors and Frances Black, hosted by Moya Brennan.

The second 'Save Our Scenery!' benefit concert will take place in Leo's Tavern, Meenaleck, Donegal on June 3rd, 2010 and
will feature Brian Kennedy, The Celtic Tenors and Frances Black, hosted by Moya Brennan.

The concert will benefit Donegal Alternatives To Pylons (ATP) who have been campaigning for 11 years for alternatives
to a planned over ground high voltage power line being erected across 102km of Donegal’s most scenic spots.
The proposed power line would go through Special Areas of Conservation and would adversely affect protected species and habitats,
human health and tourism, Donegal's no.1 employer.

The campaigners have major concerns about the ill-health effects of living near high voltage power lines.
Studies in the UK, Germany and the US have shown that incidents of child leukaemia and adult cancers are
increased by 20-70% for people living between one and four miles from high voltage power lines.
This power line is proposed to be erected parallel to the existing 38kv line at a distance of 20-200 metres,
creating a sterile corridor which will cut through a 1000 landowners’ properties, near 15,500 homes and
in 100 townlands, 97 of which are in the Donegal Gaeltacht.

The chosen route would necessitate moving heavy machinery across and excavating Special Areas of Conservation
and important habitats protected under Irish and EU Law.
What is the point, ATP ask, of having laws to protect the environment if a semi-state company like ESB
and a private company like Eirgrid can break the law sanctioned by the Irish State?

This power line is not, ATP maintain, to bring power into Donegal but to take it out from industrial sized wind
farms now at the planning stage. Donegal already produces more wind energy than any other county in Ireland (225MV)
and there are plans to triple wind energy production in Donegal in the next decade.
That would mean at least a 1,000 more turbines on a land grab of 3,000 hectares which the landscape
and Donegal's hill farming community cannot sustain. At present Donegal is generating ten times the amount of
wind energy as in Wicklow or Mayo, for instance, even though those counties are just as windy as Donegal.
Indeed there is no regulation of the amount of turbines in any given county and most counties, including Dublin, Meath and Kildare, have no turbines.

Under International law this amounts to an 'environmental injustice' being forced on the small, poor, marginalised
and Irish speaking population in South West Donegal.

The campaigners argue that it is within the power of the Minister for Energy, Eamon Ryan, to overturn the ESB & Eirgrid’s
planning permission and to look at sustainable energy transmission and generation for rural Ireland.

ATP say that, if proven necessary, this power line could be ducted in a utilities tunnel alongside existing main roads for
less than the cost of ESB's 2009 advertising budget. But the power companies want to run the lines over
ground and near hills to facilitate wind energy developers. Why should these developers profit at the expense of those
who live and holiday in Donegal? ATP are asking.

ATP are delighted that these musicians are taking time out of their busy schedules to support the 'Save Our Scenery!' campaign.
The Celtic Tenors have just released their 5th album, 'Hard Times', in the USA. Frances Black has just finished touring in the Netherlands.
This year has also been busy for Brian Kennedy who received the Meteor Lifetime Achievement Award in February
and who is heading to Glastonbury after the 'Save Our Scenery!' gig in Leo's Tavern.
The concert is already sold out and plans are in motion for more Save Our Scenery! gigs in Leo's Tavern over the Summer.
For information on the concert email Cameron Campbell on
For information on Donegal Alternatives to Pylons, email or see the group's Facebook page.

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