Friday, March 31, 2006
31st March 2006
IT'S been fairly hectic all week, preparing for the Labour Party Conference - it takes place tomorrow in the Helix in Dublin City University. I'll be giving presenting at a work conference - a bit of a pre-view of Labour's health policy documents that will be launched shortly... I'll let you know shortly.
By the way, the programme of events for the Liberty Project - that I've discussed here before - is up on the Labour Party website..under the Current Campaigns section.
There are a few events around the country as well as various events in Dublin and surrouding areas. It promises to be very interesting as the programme is quite diverse. The Liberty Project for those of you who aren't sure and are interested is a joint SIPTU/LABOUR project to commmemorate the role of the Labour movement in Irish history - with particular reference to the events surrounding 1916...One of the event's I'll be looking forward to in particular will be the arts event - a serious of readings from Fintan O'Toole, Anne Enright, Roddy Doyle, Paula Meehan, Theo Dorgan and Glenn Patterson. There'll be a few songs by Jimmy Kelly too!
Oh and a Greystones update...I recently expressed concern at the revelations contained in a submission by the Minister of the Marine to An Bord Pleanala in relation to the proposed Harbour and North Beach development at Greystones.
This submission from the Minister for the Marine raises very serious flaws in the proposal. For example it recommends that the scheme will have to be redesigned to ensure that only acceptable wave heights are achieved at the Marina. This recommendation must raise fundamental doubts about the entire scheme.
On a number of points it describes the Environmental Impact Study as either contradictory or lacking clarity, and also raises concerns about the impact of dredging and on fish life.
Another disturbing finding is that the issue of coastal protection is not properly addressed. There are serious doubts raised about the modelling with regard to impacts of the development on the North Beach.
This submission must set alarms bells ringing. The original purpose of this entire proposal was to restore the harbour and prevent coastal erosion.
Concerns already have been raised about the scale of this development, the traffic implications and the pressure on the local infrastructure.
Now this new evidence from an expert Government source must be taken seriously. Coastal protection must take precedence over private profit.
There is still time to go back to the drawing board and I am urging that a re-think now takes place at Wicklow County Council level to provide a well-designed smaller scale restoration project for Greystones Harbour and the North Beach.