10 April 2007
Adequate power supplies to West vital
There is a clear need to improve infrastructure in the West of Ireland if vital jobs are to be created and maintained, according to the Council for the West.
Welcoming an ESB application to run a new 110kV line from Westport to Castlebar, Council chairman Sean Hannick said the electricity supply system into the region was barely adequate to meet existing needs not to mind catering for future demands.
He said the Council for the West was aware of fluctuations in voltage which had already resulted in interruptions to manufacturing processes in the area. "These interruptions are costly and should not be an issue in 2007," he said.
"It is imperative that the network is adequate to meet needs over the next ten years, that it is competitively priced and that it is stable. Despite the success of the economy, much of the western region is still crying out for new jobs and the can only come about if the necessary infrastructure is in place," he said.
Mr Hannick said power lines need to be in place to meet the challenges which lay ahead.
It is vital to allow existing industry expand, It is also necessary, he said, that new job opportunities were created in the region and equally vital that all the pieces were in place to make that happen.
"Business parks are being planned for Ballina, Westport, and throughout the region and an adequate power supply is a basic requirement to ensure that these parks can attract inward investment," he added.
Mr Hannick said any downturn in the construction business would be sorely felt in terms of job losses. Where are the alternative jobs to come from? he asked. "And how much harder will it to attract those jobs to this region if such a vital element as an enabling power supply is missing or found wanting," he added.
The Council for the West is a voluntary, independent, non-political body which monitors and reports on the socio-economic state of the West and acts as a lobby group promoting the development of the West. The Council for the West was set up by the Western Bishops and has successfully campaigned for retention of Objective 1 Status for the region.
It continues to campaign for balanced regional development and highlights issues of major concern for the region.
Public Relations Officer: Terry Reilly 086 8109518 / 096 21603 / email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Co-ordinator: Caroline Wilson, Tel: 096 32975 / email: email@example.com
Sean Hannick: Co.Mayo, Tel: 096 32255 / 087 2564824, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Council for the West, Killala Business Park, Killala, Co. Mayo. Tel: 096 32975, Fax: 096 32014, E-mail: email@example.com
Web: www.councilforthewest.ie Charitable Status No.: CHY 10724, Developing the West Together Limited Registered No.: 197197