Residents of Co Kerry village join opposition to wind turbines

8 Jan 2014

Some 275 residents of Finuge, Co Kerry, have indicated they would rather leave their homes than see 10 huge wind turbines installed in the area.

Citizens of the village near Listowel have put up signs that read, “Home for sale, pending wind farm planning decision. Viewing by appointment only,” The Telegraph reported.

If Kerry County Council approves construction of the turbines, they will be the highest constructions in Ireland – three times the height of the 40-metre high Nelson’s column in London, according to The Telegraph.

Resistance to wind farms has been growing across Ireland lately, particularly as they spread closer to people’s homes in the lowlands, where turbines have to be larger in order to generate enough electricity from weaker winds there.

Some 176 wind farms comprising more than 1,100 turbines now stand across the country as Ireland strives to hit a national target of generating at least 40pc of its electricity from renewables by 2020.

Wind turbine plans across Ireland

Finuge isn’t the only area in which wind turbines are planned. Another 1,100 wind turbines – some even bigger than the ones planned for Finuge – are being eyed for the midland counties of Laois, Meath, Westmeath, Offaly and Kildare, reported The Telegraph. These future turbines would generate electricity for export to the UK.

Some may consider the opposition to the wind turbines a pity, considering the plentiful supply of wind in Ireland and the jobs and investment opportunities in the clean-energy sector.

Just this past 20 November, for instance, wind power output reached a record 1,564 megawatts (MW) in Ireland that morning, enough to power more than 1m homes, the Irish Wind Energy Association (IWEA) reported.

And in addition to the environmental benefits clean energy offers, more than 3,400 people are already employed in the clean-energy sector in Ireland, the IWEA’s chief executive Kenneth Matthews had said.

Wind turbine image via Shutterstock

Tina Costanza was a journalist and sub-editor at Silicon Republic