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Irish Times: Mayo pipeline contempt case

Irish Times: Mayo pipeline contempt case

“The Rossport five and their families have one demand only. They require that normal international technical standards be adhered to in the siting of this pipeline complex. Nothing more but nothing less.”

Thursday Jul 07, 2005

Madam, – Your Editorial of July 5th on the Mayo contempt case asserts that “the Health and Safety Authority accepted that the pipeline met international standards.” In fact the Shell pipeline was never subjected to the planning process: by Ministerial fiat, it was exempted from planning. An Bord Pleanala was not involved. The HSA have no function in this pipeline and has refused to carry out a safety analysis, even when requested to do so on a commercial basis.

Where did you get the idea that the HSA accepted that the pipeline met international standards, when it refused to involved itself in the process in spite of constant urgings from concerned Rossport residents? An Bord Pleanala noted that refining offshore is an option, but not developed by Shell. An Bord Pleanala neither did nor did not “uphold” the pipeline plan – it was never asked.

The Rossport five and their families have one demand only. They require that normal international technical standards be adhered to in the siting of this pipeline complex. Nothing more but nothing less. Madam, do you find this unreasonable? The law, where it is just, must be obeyed. Where it facilitates injustice it must be opposed, openly and steadfastly. The Rossport five are in jail on one issue – the safety of our people, which is not negotiable. Bunreacht na hEireann demands no less. – Yours, etc,

Dr JERRY COWLEY TD, Dail Eireann, Dublin 2.

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