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Community campaigner reflects on Corrib controversy

By: 
Áine Ryan - Mayo News

Retired teacher, Micheál Ó Seighin was reluctantly forced into the public spotlight when he was jailed in 2005 over flouting an injunction facilitating Shell’s development of the Corrib Gas project. Here he speaks exclusively to Áine Ryan as the gas is about to come on-stream.

AR It is almost 20 years since the Corrib Field was discovered in 1996. Can you bring us back to those early years and how you became involved in the debacle?
MOS I know now, as the rig workers did at the time, that the gas field to be called Corrib was well worth developing and would make money. My first introduction to it was an article by Mike Cunningham in the Western People in 1998 pointing out the potential for County Mayo in this new source of development a potential never to be realised.  At that stage Broadhaven Bay or its environs or other areas of European designation did not figure in the proposed development and I saw no significance in the moves by Coillte in the summer of 1999 to get legal title to its lands at Ballinaboy, the project’s refinery site. Nor, in 2000, was I aware of the flood of minor legislation passing through the Dáil to facilitate this project specifically.
In the early summer of 2000 and then in early autumn the ‘suits’ crowded into the area with models and scenarios and promising ‘goodies and pie in the sky’, buying pints etc. The Catholic Bishop of Kilalla and our local parish priest were charging around like harbingers of the Day of (good) Judgement; obviously we would never see a poor day again; but I personally was very aware of the limited short-time benefit accruing to any community from the extraction of raw materials. Still I was not concerned as I expected a project like that of Kinsale gas but my attitude changed when the [original] developer (Enterprise Oil) applied for planning permission in November 2000 and I saw what they intended to do to us, effectively to launch a heavy metals assault on us from land sea and air. That is how and why I became involved in objecting for the first time in my life.

Posted Date: 
25 March 2015

New twist in Corrib saga as 800m of ducting is found floating in Atlantic

By: 
Keith Bourke & Orla Hearns - Western People

LONG-TIME Shell to Sea campaigner Maura Harrington has described the incident whereby plastic ducting associated with the long-running Corrib gas  project was found floating in Broadhaven Bay last Friday as "farcical".

Shell E& P Ireland Ltd – the developers of the Corrib gas pipeline and terminal at Bellanaboy -– has stressed that there is no evidence to suggest that the ducting was broken or damaged in any way. The ducting is used to discharge treated surface water from the Bellanaboy terminal in accordance with its licence from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)) "This has no impact on the gas pipeline. That is completely separate," the spokesperson stressed.

An 800m long section of the ducting, which in its totality extends some 10-12 miles out to open sea, appears to have become dislodged from the sea bed where it had been anchored in place with boulders since 2009. It is thought that recent stormy weather may have resulted in this section rising from the sea bed.

Posted Date: 
19 March 2015

Almost a kilometre of Corrib Shell pipeline loose and floating under sea

By: 
Sam Griffin - Irish Independent

An article by Sam Griffin published 13 March 2015 by The Irish Independent

An 800m section of Shell pipeline from the Corrib gas processing plant has come loose and is floating under the sea.

Both Shell Ireland and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are investigating the incident off the north Mayo coast.

Posted Date: 
14 March 2015

Shell gig invite turned down by The Saw Doctors

By: 
Lorna Siggins - Irish Times

Mayo band involving Corrib gas terminal staff to fill the breach

Folk rock band The Saw Doctors has turned down an invitation from Shell E&P Ireland to play at a gig in north Mayo this month celebrating the completion of the Corrib gas terminal.

The Tuam band, which is currently on a break from live appearances, said it was “not interested in playing for Shell E&P Ireland”.

However, Shell has confirmed that some musicians among the company’s own staff would be performing instead.

Posted Date: 
10 March 2015

An Garda Síochana - Analysis of a Police Force Unfit for Purpose

By: 
Tom Hanahoe, Terence Conway & John Monaghan

This thread, and the blog post on the same topic at Polical World blog, is a new departure for politicalworld.org. PW is making available for the first time via Scribd a new publication on a topic of great current political interest, much discussed on this forum - the fitness for purpose, or otherwise, of An Garda Síochana. The study goes back to the earliest days of the "Force" up to and including the Shell to Sea experience.Seán Ryan, who is very familiar with the study, has written the introduction to it below.

The study is available here: View on Scribd

Posted Date: 
4 March 2015
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