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Local politicians attack Irish Cement’s RDF plans

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World Cement,

Local politicians have attacked a decision by Limerick City and County Council to approve a €10 million plan by Irish Cement to upgrade its Mungret cement plant to burn refuse-derived fuels (RDF), claiming the plant would increase emissions from the plant.

“Allowing hazardous waste to be incinerated at any facility in Limerick will certainly present future generations with possible far reaching health impact, due to the like emissions of dioxins and furans,” said Councillor Malachy McCreesh. “To date, objections on serious health concerns by local communities and residents living in the wider emissions impact zone have largely been ignored.”

Councillors unanimously backed a motion opposing the company’s plans, with one councillor threatening to take Irish Cement to the European Court of Human Rights over the issue.

In contrast, Irish Cement has always maintained that the fuel switch would not result in an increase in toxic emissions, due to the high temperatures at which the RDF would be burnt, and would reduce the plant’s CO2 emissions by up 40 000 tpy.

“This in an important project, as Limerick is the last remaining cement factory in Ireland to start a fossil fuel replacement programme,” the company said in a statement upon the plan’s approval. “This practice as been in use in cement plants across Europe for 40 years and also successfully in Ireland for the past nine years.”

Meanwhile, Council Director, Kieran Lehane, said that, while he accepted the “very genuine concerns expressed,” the council was “bound in making decisions by planning and environmental law.”

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