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From a Prison Cell to a State Luncheon

By: 
James Laffey - The Western People

It's a long way from a cell in Castlerea Prison to an audience with the Garda Commissioner in the opulent surrounds of Farmleigh House in Dublin's Phoenix Park. But if there's any man who could achieve that turnaround in a few short years its the inimitable firsherman from North Mayo Pat “The Chief” O'Donnell.


2013: Pat & Martin O'Donnell pictured with the Garda Commissioner Martin Callanan after receiving an award for bravery.
2007: Martin & Pat O'Donnell after getting beaten by Shell bribed Gardai, for trying to protect their area and community.

Three years ago, O'Donnell became an anti-establishment hero after the acclaimed television documentary The Pipe was broadcast across the globe. The documentary charted O'Donnell's tireless and colourful opposition to the Corrib Gas pipeline, highlighting a 'David versus Goliath' battle as the chain-smoking fisherman doggedly refused to bow to the combined might of State and corporate interests.

Posted Date: 
6 November 2013

Garda watchdog to investigate Corrib booze claims

By: 
Áine Ryan - Mayo News

THE garda watchdog is expected to reveal today (Tuesday) that it will open an investigation into allegations by a former Corrib gas contractor who claims he supplied a large quantity of alcohol to Belmullet Garda Station before Christmas 2007. This follows GSOC’s  (Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission) receipt of the findings of an investigation into the matter, led by a senior Mayo Garda, Superintendent Thomas Murphy.

Posted Date: 
23 October 2013

Bogs and Booze in Bellanaboy and Belmullet

By: 
Risteard Ó Domhnaill - Village Magazine

Shell and OSSL dispute whether inducements were given to Gardai and named individuals. 

“Shell was using OSSL to win hearts and minds in Mayo to progress the project but suddenly things changed, and tracks needed covering”- Desmond Kane, OSSL

Seventeen years ago this month, the Petrolia drilling rig hit a natural gas field

50 miles off the west coast of Mayo. According to Briain O Cathain, MD of Enterprise Energy, who made the find, “It was one of the biggest well-tests that Enterprise had ever done”. For O Cathain and other Irish people working in oil and gas around the world, it represented great hope that finally they could come home to work in the emerging Irish industry.

O Cathain, now heading the successful oil company, Petroceltic, did not get to see the Corrib project to fruition. Following Shell’s takeover of Enterprise and planning difficulties with Corrib, O Cathain moved on. With hindsight, it was a good move.

Posted Date: 
19 October 2013

Court ruling a setback for a project which has overrun on costs and time

By: 
Lorna Siggins - Irish Times

Shell E&P Ireland Ltd (SEPIL) has played down the significance of yesterday’s Commercial Court decision quashing an emissions licence for the Corrib gas terminal, but the ruling is a setback for the €3 billion project.

Were the project not at least nine years behind schedule, the setback would be far more significant.

However, the lead developer has already conceded that it could be early 2015 before gas is flowing commercially from the field - and that was before last month’s (sept) fatality during work on the final stages, when a German sub-contractor, Lars Wagner (26), lost his life.

Work remains suspended on tunnelling this final section of pipeline route under Sruwadaccon estuary - a special area of conservation (SAC) - which links the landfall for gas at Glengad to the terminal already built at Ballinaboy. A Health and Safety Authority (HSA) investigation has been in train since the fatal incident involving a valve on the tunnel boring machine.

Posted Date: 
16 October 2013

Revised licence for operation of Shell gas terminal at Ballinaboy quashed by Commercial Court

By: 
RTE News

The revised licence for the operation of the Shell gas terminal at Ballinaboy, Co Mayo, has been quashed by the Commercial Court.

In a setback for the Shell Corrib gas pipeline project, the Environmental Protection Agency, which issued the licence last June, conceded in court that a Mayo man was entitled to an order quashing the licence because of defects in carrying out an Environmental Impact Assessment.

Posted Date: 
15 October 2013
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