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Planning board defer decision on Shell Corrib Gas onshore Pipeline citing safety doubts…

From ShelltoSea

An Bord Pleanala today announced a deferral of the decision on the Corrib Gas onshore Pipeline, citing 14 conditions which cast huge doubt over claims from Shell that the project is safe. In the third delay on the decision regarding this pipeline, which was originally due on August 10, the Bord have highlighted hugely important safety concerns which are at the heart of the community’s objections to the imposition of the Corrib Gas Project on the area.

An Bord Pleanala stated that the documentation provided by Shell ‘does not present a complete, transparent and adequate demonstration that the pipeline does not provide an unacceptable risk to the public’.

Some of the glaring inadequacies pointed out by An Bord Pleanala include:

  • Shell omitted details on the start of the onshore pipeline, which has the highest pressure -345bar
  • A totally new Quantitative Risk Assessment required, that shows the risk at the different locations and operating conditions along the route
  • Incomplete information on ‘building burn distances’ and ‘escape distances’.
  • No assessment of the ‘societal risk’ to people at Glengad has been carried out.

The Bord also highlighted the fact that ‘Major hazard pipelines’ (transporting wet gas) have not been properly legislated for in this country, and they therefore stated that UK standards relating to comparable pipelines should be used.

Shell to Sea spokesperson Maura Harrington said: “What An Bord Pleanala have really shown today is that the Corrib Gas pipeline is not safe to be routed through our community, or indeed any residential area. Shell have consistently shown their inability and unwillingness to make this project safe – what it needs is a total overhaul, with real consideration given to the genuine problems with the project raised by campaigners”.

She added: “While we appreciate that An Bord Pleanala are under huge pressure from the government and Shell to allow this, they should not be making pre-emptive statements about supporting the project if Shell address safety concerns. This compromises their position in implying that if a project is submitted as Strategic Infrastructure, it will be pushed through regardless of the severe danger it poses to peoples lives. Ireland’s real strategic interest would be in regaining control of our natural resources.”

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