Kilkenny branch of An Taisce backs legal challenge to Belview cheese plant

On Monday, An Taisce won the right to challenge cheese plant proposal in South Kilkenny

Planning permission

File photo

The Kilkenny branch of An Taisce has said it fully supports its national organisation's legal challenge to plans for a new cheese manufacturing facility in Belview.

On Monday, the High Court granted An Taisce permission to bring a legal challenge, by way of judicial review, against a decision by An Bord Pleanála to green light the construction of the new plant. An Taisce says that any further increase in dairy production is unsustainable because of its environmental impacts. 

The organisation is arguing that the impact of the agricultural activity arising from the production of the estimated 450 million litres of milk needed to supply the plant was not adequately assessed by An Bord Pleanála, particularly the resulting ammonia and greenhouse gas emissions and potential deterioration in water quality.

According to An Taisce’s estimates, the milk produced to supply the plant on its own would lead to a 2.5% increase in ammonia emissions at a time when Ireland is already in breach of its commitments to limit ammonia emissions and has a legal obligation to meet lower limits in the future. An Taisce has also raised concerns about the effects on water quality and protected habitats in the South-east.

The matter returns to court on February 2, 2021.

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