"This is one of the most important stories of it's kind in Europe."
A marine biologist has expressed serious concern about the environmental impact of Enterprise Oil's gas landfall on the north Mayo coastline. The development "would appear to offer very little to the local community" and will have a "strongly negative effect" on the environment. Dr Alex Rogers of the School of Ocean and Earth Science at the University of Southampton says.
Discharge of heavy metals, including mercury and quantities of methanol, could contaminate marine life and affect the livelihoods of fishermen and tourism interests in the are, he says.
Dr Rogers was commisioned by the director of a local shellfish company, Mr Pat O'Donnell of Porturlin, to comment on the Environmental Impact Statements (EISs) by Enterprise Oil for it's proposed pipline landfall and gas terminal at Dooncarton and Bellanaboy Bridge near Rossport (not Pullathomas as originally announced) on Broadhaven Bay. In a preliminary comment which wil be followed by a full report, the marine biologist says the gas terminal site, on 44 hectares will have an immediate and substantial impact on the largely undeveloped surrounding countryside.
Dr. Rogers questions the exact nature of the outfall pipe which will release water from the terminal into Broadhaven Bay some four kilometers offshore. He notes that the EIA admits that the eact nature and quantities of the mercury compounds released are "unpredictable".