AMID calls for a campaign of civil disobedience to stop a planned incinerator being built in Ringaskiddy, the director of the company behind the waste facility has said it is “open to discussions” with residents opposed to it.
The granting of permission for the eight-story waste facility which will take up to 240,000 tonnes of municipal waste, including 24,000 tonnes of hazardous waste each year, has sparked anger in the lower harbour area of Cork.
Cork North Central TD Mick Barry, a member of the Solidarity party, said a local effort similar to the organised protests against water charges in 2015 may be needed to stop Indaver from building it.
“There is a discussion that is underway now. It comes after the success of the anti-water charges campaign, the idea that people power and civil disobedience is a powerful weapon in the hands of ordinary people — the idea of physically blocking construction of this monstrosity,” he said.
“Nearly twenty years ago in Cobh, people stopped the pylons and a discussion is beginning in the communities as to whether today people power may be necessary to block the construction of this thing. It would be a big, big step to take and would need serious planning,” he added.
However, Indaver managing director John Ahern told RTÉ Morning Ireland programme that the facility is needed and the company is willing to enter into mediation discussions with local opposition groups.
A judicial review in the High Court is likely to be taken by the Cork Harbour for A Safe Environment (CHASE) group.
Mr Ahern said he can “understand” the anger of local residents but added the matter might not have to go through the courts.
“I understand from media reports that they would like to go to the High Court, but maybe there’s another model, maybe there are other places where mediation is entered into, before, and in parallel, if wished, instead of going to the expense of the High Court.
“We’re open to discussions all the time.”
Meanwhile, CHASE has set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds for a judicial review which they expect to cost a minimum of €150,000 in legal fees.
CHASE steering committee member Dominick Donnelly said: “We have a very short time to raise this money before we can go forward and take the decision to the High Court.
“This is a very expensive business, and all money raised will go towards this.”
The page raised almost €23,000 within 36 hours of being set up.