Four Fine Gael TDs and two Senators have described today’s High Court decision to dismiss An Taisce’s application to apply to the Court of Appeal against a €140m cheese plant investment as “a positive day for rural Ireland”.
Laois TD Charlie Flanagan (Laois/Offaly), Paul Kehoe (Wexford), John Paul Phelan (Carlow/Kilkenny) and David Stanton (Cork East) along with Senators John Cummins (Waterford) and Garret Ahearn (Tipperary) welcomed the decision to dismiss the leave to appeal case taken by An Taisce challenging the investment of €140m in a continental cheese plant by Glanbia at Waterford Port in Belview.
The six Fine Gael representatives described the news as a, “A win for ordinary farming families and a positive day for rural Ireland”.
Speaking today, following the failed High Court challenge by An Taisce, the Fine Gael representatives said: “This decision is a positive decision for rural Ireland and a win for ordinary farming families across our constituencies.
“We welcome and respect the judgement and call on An Taisce to do likewise.
“It is time now for meaningful engagement between all parties. This can and should be done outside of the court room and we would ask An Taisce to engage with Glanbia and farming organisations, who represent farming families across this country, to address the any concerns which they have.
“In taking any further action, An Taisce would further alienate the main group involved in environmental protection across Ireland – our farmers and their families.
“An Bord Pleanala, the High Court and Mr Justice Humphreys have all now determined that the awarding of permission for this cheese plant which is a key element of diversification post Brexit is lawful and should proceed.
“This plant will support the lives and livelihoods of 4,500 farm families across the South East and beyond and create hundreds of jobs during construction.
“Our farmers are the custodians of our environment and they are constantly working to protect it and improve sustainability.”
The project has been given approval by the local authority, Kilkenny County Council, An Bord Pleanála, and the High Court.