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Irish Times: Dempsey names Corrib group as talks held with Shell

Irish Times: Dempsey names Corrib group as talks held with Shell

“The Minister has also confirmed that he met Shell representatives yesterday to discuss the company’s breach of preparatory works, consent for the offshore pipeline and his proposed safety review.”

Thursday Aug 11, 2005

Lorna Siggins, Marine Correspondent

Minister for the Marine Noel Dempsey has announced the composition of his new high-level advisory group that will monitor the Corrib gas project. The Minister has also confirmed that he met Shell representatives yesterday to discuss the company’s breach of preparatory works, consent for the offshore pipeline and his proposed safety review.

A presentation was also made by Shell in relation to the project’s background and “putting the project in its wider gas market context”, Mr Dempsey said.

The new technical advisory group comprises Bob Hanna, chief technical adviser and energy installations inspector for the Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources; Koen Verbruggen, senior geologist with the Geological Survey of Ireland; and Richard McKeever, assistant chief engineer with the department.

The group will select the successful tender for the Minister’s new safety review and examine its conclusions and recommendations. It will also oversee a programme of inspection, with both regular and “on-the-spot” checks by authorised officers to verify compliance with the plan of development and various ministerial consents.

The group is separate to the department’s petroleum affairs division, which only identified a recent breach of consents after a report and photograph last month in The Irish Times.

The Minister was yesterday sent a submission by MIcheal O Seighin, one of the five north Mayo residents still in prison over opposition to the pipeline. In the letter, Mr O Seighin expands on safety concerns over the pipeline’s routing.

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