The scenic Lough an Leagh

Visual impact of pylons tackled

The protection of Lough an Leagh for its scenic and amenity value has been addressed in the draft Cavan County Development Plan 2022-2028.

The move, with one eye on what is currently happening with regards to the Eirgrid North-South Interconnector project, looks to restrict what the local authority might consider 'inappropriate development'.

Fianna Fáil's Clifford Kelly initially sought that 'proposals for greater protection under national designation' be included.

He said: “The problem is that there doesn't seem a present to be a way to control what is happening.”

His motion was seconded by Aontú's Sarah O'Reilly, but for the executive's Senior Planner Nicholas O'Kane to recommend an amendment to what was being proposed.

The wording proposed by the council, and supported by both Cllr Kelly and O'Reilly, is that Lough and Leagh will be protected for its scenic and amenity value by restricting inappropriate development 'and support further scientific studies, facilitate the appropriate conservation and protection of the area to support proposals for greater protection under national designations'.

The second motion concerning the North-South Interconnector was put forward separately Cllr Kelly and Cllr O'Reilly, but were both the same.

Under 'Gas and Electricity', each asked that the words 'and/or overgrounding' be included in a section which states 'where undergrounding of cables is being pursued, proposals should demonstrate that environmental impacts be minimised'.

Among the impacts listed, Cllr Kelly and O'Reilly both added 'visual impacts' to the list.

Cllr Kelly's motion was seconded by Cllr O'Reilly and vice versa.