Monypoint’s future to be discussed at public meeting

Monypoint’s future to be discussed at public meeting

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Fog shrouds the ESP Moneypoint power plant on the Shannon Estuary. Image Pat Flynn
Fog shrouds the ESP Moneypoint power plant on the Shannon Estuary. Image Pat Flynn

The need to continue to support Moneypoint and futureproof its role in the regional economy has been highlighted by Michael McNamara TD in advance of a public meeting in Kilrush this evening.

The meeting, to be chaired by Deputy McNamara, will also be addressed by Brendan Kennedy, General Manager of Moneypoint, as well as UNITE trade union personnel. It takes place on Friday 27th at 730 pm in the Kilrush Community Centre.

Deputy McNamara re-iterated the importance of the facility to the local and wider economy, arguing that this needs to be underpinned by more active planning for the future.

“The jobs and spin-offs at Moneypoint are vital and that is why I have resisted any proposals on the sale of state assets. However, we must go further and act to ensure that the plant continues its key role in regional prosperity into the future,” he said.

Energy expert Malcolm Brown of B-W Energy will travel from London to offer insights into possible alternative strategies for the plant in the emerging era of decarbonisation. Brown has 30 years’ experience in the energy and low carbon economy sectors including Head of Business Development at Climate Change Capital, a specialist low carbon advisory and asset management business.

He has outlined how the future conversion of plants like Moneypoint to burn sustainable biomass can protect existing jobs and develop a sustainable local supply chain building on Clare’s afforestation profile.

This could give the power station an extra thirty years of service, create 200 additional jobs in wood pellet production and servicing, guarantee security of supply and protect the hard-won tourism reputation of the Wild Atlantic Way and West Clare.

Clare Fianna Fail General Election candidate, Michael McDonagh commented: “The question of the future of Moneypoint needs to be put to bed.”

“The future of Moneypoint is in retaining and converting the existing plant into a biomass facility. The ESB have said that they are committed to the future of Moneypoint, I would ask the next government to put in place as a matter of priority the required funding to covert Moneypoint to burn Biomass. It is certainly a more attractive option that the Nuclear one, mentioned by Pat Rabbitte in May 2014,” he added.

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