In August, Wicklow Uplands Council hosted an extremely engaging and lively workshop on Sustainable Energy. 20 international DIT post graduate students and their leaders joined with representatives from a number of organisations to debate and discuss renewable energy sources in Wicklow. As it has become such a contentious issue the main topic of the day was wind energy.
The students spent the morning visiting the new Raheenleagh wind farm and arrived in Roundwood for the afternoon workshop.
The workshop was opened with a presentation on the work of Wicklow Uplands Council by Brian Dunne and Vice Chairman Tom Byrne. Enda Mullen, NPWS, gave an excellent overview on Wicklow Mountains National Park and the implications of SAC and SPA designations on the siting of wind turbines and their potential impacts on wildlife. Richard More-O’Ferrell from SWWAG (South Wicklow Wind Action Group) presented on the some of the potential negative impacts of wind turbines on adjacent residents. The workshop fuelled lively debate on the merits and negative aspects of wind energy.
It was very valuable to have a number of members of Wicklow Uplands Council in attendance sharing their views and local experience with wind and other sustainable energy sources with the participants. We would like to thank all those who participated for their time and contributions.