Concerns are being raised over plans to discharge treated wastewater from a Cheese factory into Cork Harbour.
The Dairygold co-op lodged a planning application last week with Cork County Council to expand production at their cheese factory at Mogeely. The co-op plans to construct a 14km pipe that will carry an estimated 290 million gallons of wastewater from their site at Mogeely to Rathcoursey West where it will be connected to an outfall pipe. If the planning application is approved by the council 3 million litres of wastewater containing fats oils and grease will be dumped into Cork harbour daily.
Local residents and environmentalists are concerned over the plans. The area is a popular location for sailing and has an important environmental impact. The outfall pipe lies between two protected sites for migratory birds at Great Island and Saleen Creek. And the area is a foraging site for the protected sea bass.
The co-op says that the all discharges will be in line with EPA standards and that it will be safely carried from the harbour on ongoing tides. However there are concerns that southerly gales could lead the residue oils and grease to congeal in the harbour and that this could pose a serious threat to the protected sea bass.