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Minister Gormley welcomes Government decision regarding the future management and development of the former Irish Steel/Ispat site at Haulbowline, Co. Cork.

Press release July 7, 2009 Energy & Environment

Mr John Gormley TD Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government today (7 July 2009) announced that the Government is to move to establish a new working group to develop detailed proposals on the future of the former Irish Steel/Ispat site at Haulbowline, Co Cork.

The group, which is to be chaired by the Office of Public Works will involve a range of Government Department and State Agencies, is being tasked with determining the optimum use for the site, and how legacy issues relating to the site are best addressed.

He said a priority for the group would be to ensure proper public consultation with the local community in drawing up detailed plans for the site.

There are a range of complex interrelated issues that have to be dealt with, including the requirement for various works and further monitoring recommended by the environmental consultants, development issues particularly technical constraints, site boundary issues, zoning issues and regulatory requirements.

"The Government has decided that the Office of Public Works (OPW) will chair a working group to develop plans for the further management and development of the site", Minister Gormley said. Cork County Council will continue to discharge site management responsibilities on an agency basis.

"There are detailed issues to be considered, but I hope that the new group will be able to do so in a timely manner. Recommending a final end use for the site will be key in determining how the legacy waste issues are dealt with, and that needs to be done in conjunction with the local community and other stakeholders. The Department of the Environment will continue to play a key role in this process."

"The expertise of the OPW in property maintenance, property management, architectural and engineering services, heritage services, project management and procurement services is ideally suited to bringing together all the key stakeholders, including community involvement as appropriate, to ensure a structured and coherent approach to the further management and development of the site".

Finally, the Minister noted that there are unique environmental concerns in the area because of the activities that have previously been carried out down the years and reiterated that the Government remains committed to dealing with the legacy issue of waste at the Haulbowline site and to reassure local residents that the relevant Departments and agencies will remain properly engaged in the management of the former Irish Ispat site in a manner consistent with best practice and minimisation of risk to human health and the environment.



Sean Dunne

Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government
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Energy & Environment
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