herald

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Trump moves to stop giant wind farm

US billionaire Donald Trump has moved to put the brakes on a giant wind-farm within sight of his Doonbeg Golf Resort warning that the wind farm will cost jobs at the resort.

This follows Mr Trump's Doonbeg Golf Resort formally lodging a strident objection against the plans by Clare Coastal Windpower Ltd for a nine-turbine wind farm with the turbines nearly 20-feet higher than Dublin's Spire.

Mr Trump has also been joined by a number of locals and unlikely allies, Friends of the Irish Environment (FIE) that originally objected to the golf resort, in opposing the wind-farm plan.

The 413ft-high wind farm is located only 4km from the golf resort on the west Clare coast and, in the objection, consultants employed by the Trump firm claim that the wind-farm "will have a detrimental impact on the viability of the Doonbeg Golf Resort".

They state: "The resort primarily relies on bookings from international and in particular the North American market and a reduction in bookings as a consequence of the visual impact from the proposed development will have a serious negative impact on tourism in the area."

Executive Vice President of the Trump Organisation, George Sorial said: "We will object to any wind farm proposal that negatively impacts our investment in Ireland."

Mr Trump has previously opposed wind-farm development in Scotland and the lengthy submission lodged with Clare Co Council points out that US tourists spend €20m per annum in the local area and the wind-farm will have a "profound negative impact on the business" of Doonbeg Golf Resort.

The objection states that the resort provides direct and indirect employment representing an investment of €150m that will generate the same again in indirect spend - creating a total tourism investment of €300m along the west Clare coast area.

RESORT

Planning consultants, Cunnane Stratton Reynolds (CSR) state: "A loss of business at Doonbeg golf resort will have direct impacts on employment at the resort and the surrounding area where many supporting tourist-related businesses have emerged and thrived in the past 10 years."

Clare Co Council is due to make a decision on the wind-farm plan next month.

hnews@herald.ie

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