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The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Alternative Copy of thesaker.is site is available Thu May 25, 2023 14:38 | Ice-Saker-V6bKu3nz
Alternative site: https://thesaker.si/saker-a... Site was created using the downloads provided Regards Herb

offsite link The Saker blog is now frozen Tue Feb 28, 2023 23:55 | The Saker
Dear friends As I have previously announced, we are now “freezing” the blog.  We are also making archives of the blog available for free download in various formats (see below). 

offsite link What do you make of the Russia and China Partnership? Tue Feb 28, 2023 16:26 | The Saker
by Mr. Allen for the Saker blog Over the last few years, we hear leaders from both Russia and China pronouncing that they have formed a relationship where there are

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Public Inquiry
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005

offsite link RTEs Sarah McInerney ? Fianna Fail supporter? Anthony

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offsite link Robert Watt complaint: Time for decision by SIPO Anthony

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Human Rights in Ireland
A Blog About Human Rights

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Lockdown Skeptics

The Daily Sceptic

offsite link If Covid Vaccines Saved 20 Million Lives, Why Did so Few Unvaccinated Die in Winter 2021? Wed Jun 12, 2024 19:00 | Nick Rendell
Media figures continue to claim that Covid vaccines saved 20 million lives. But it's just modelling, says Nick Rendell ? and it's contradicted by the data, which show the unvaccinated didn't die at a greater rate.
The post If Covid Vaccines Saved 20 Million Lives, Why Did so Few Unvaccinated Die in Winter 2021? appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link It?s Not ?Advocate For?. It?s ?Advocate? Wed Jun 12, 2024 17:00 | Will Jones
It's 'advocate', not 'advocate for'. Just because an error is common, doesn't stop it being wrong. And no, you can't 'advocate against'; that's an oxymoron. Can we at least get our words right, pleads Will Jones.
The post It’s Not ‘Advocate For’. It’s ‘Advocate’ appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link How Jacinda Ardern Left New Zealand on the Brink of Blackouts ? But Starmer Wants to Copy Her Wed Jun 12, 2024 15:30 | Will Jones
Sir Keir Starmer is standing by a pledge to ban new drilling in the North Sea, despite New Zealand abandoning a similar policy made by ex-PM Jacinda Ardern amid blackout fears.
The post How Jacinda Ardern Left New Zealand on the Brink of Blackouts ? But Starmer Wants to Copy Her appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Cochrane?s Race to the Bottom Wed Jun 12, 2024 13:26 | Dr Carl Heneghan and Dr Tom Jefferson
In 2020, the Cochrane Collaboration delayed its review of face masks and NPIs for six months while pushing out on-message rapid reviews based on low quality evidence. It still won't admit it was wrong.
The post Cochrane’s Race to the Bottom appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Mark Steyn Takes Ofcom to Court Saying Regulator Killed His Career Over Covid Vaccine Claims Wed Jun 12, 2024 11:10 | Will Jones
Mark Steyn, the former GB News presenter, has taken Ofcom to court accusing it of "killing his career" after he questioned Covid vaccines on air, with the regulator saying his programmes caused "harm to viewers".
The post Mark Steyn Takes Ofcom to Court Saying Regulator Killed His Career Over Covid Vaccine Claims appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

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A report on the first week of the EPA oral hearing on the IPPC licence for the Corrib Gas refinery.

category mayo | environment | news report author Wednesday April 25, 2007 02:49author by Eve - RSC Report this post to the editors

The siting of the refinery at Bellanaboy "defies any rational understanding of the term sustainability" Kevin Moore, Senior Planning Inspector Kevin Moore.

A report on the first week of the EPA's oral hearing on the granting of the IPPC (integrated pollution prevention and control) licence for the Corrib gas refinery at Bellanaboy.
Model of the proposed Corrib Gas refinery at Bellanaboy.
Model of the proposed Corrib Gas refinery at Bellanaboy.

The EPA oral hearing for the granting of the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control licence commenced on Monday the 16th of April in the Broadhaven Bay hotel in Belmullet. The EPA issued a provisional decision to grant the IPPC licence to Shell for their proposed refinery at Bellanaboy Bridge on 26th January 2007 This decision was met with disappointment from Erris residents and community activists who availed of the 28 day 'consultation period' lodging objections to the granting of the license with the EPA and calling for the oral hearing to be convened. Opponents of the Corrib gas project were not the only ones to object to the EPA's proposed decision. Shell also objected to some of the 85 conditions attached to the proposed licence, wanting eight of them to be reworded.

The first week saw the examination of issues around cold venting, flaring, site drainage, air emissions and water emissions with a host of expert witnesses being produced by Shell including Dr Nigel Peters a drainage expert, Agnes Mc Lavery chemical engineer and environmental advisor, and Ian McRae of SEPIL. Submissions against the granting of the licence were put forward by William Walker, a local fisherman, Erris Inshore Fisherman's Association, Leo Corcoran on behalf of an Taisce, Fr Nallan parish priest of Kilcommon, Pat McAndrew local resident and John Healey a local business owner.

In addition to the objectors and public audience the EPA hearing was attended by several plain clothes Gardai as well as uniformed Gardai who manned the doors of the hotel. Several complaints were made during the hearing about the police presence. It was uncertain as to why police were present, the EPA having indicated that they did not request a Garda presence.

From the outset of the oral hearing the mood was one of resignation; the fact that the EPA has never reversed a proposed decision of this nature, the fact that as the hearing went about its business peat was being excavated from the site at Bellanaboy and perhaps the fact that throughout the entire planning process the state has smoothed the way for the oil companies even to the extent of changing laws to suit the project. In 2000 before the oil companies had even applied for planning permission Bertie Ahern announced at the 21st birthday of Bord Gais that a pipeline would be built from Bellanaboy to the loop at Galway rendering the entire planning process a mere series of hoops to be jumped through by the oil companies. Indeed when the planning permission was initially denied to Shell on the basis that the siting of the refinery at Bellanaboy, in the words of senior planning inspector Kevin Moore, "defies any rational understanding of the term sustainability" the then Minister of State for Labour Affairs, Frank Fahey announced that the project had been delayed on "a technicality."

The EPA's record and supposed independence has also been called into question. Director general of the EPA Mary Kelly appeared in an early promotional video for the Corrib gas project in her capacity as a representative of the Irish business lobby IBEC. Controversy arose in 2004 when the Green Party called for the newly appointed director of the EPA, Ms Laura Burke not to take her position on the basis that she had previously worked as a project manager for Indaver Ireland's two incinerator projects, and that her appointment in the words of Tervor Seargent would "utterly compromise the position of the EPA." The body has a poor record for enforcing its own regulations meting out tokenistic fines to polluting corporations. It has repeatly come under criticisms from campaigners and residents groups for acting in the interest of big business and merely providing a veneer of environmental protection. In an article published in the Irish Times a spokesperson from Cork Environmental Alliance described the licensing system as "a complete farce" describing how the EPA sometimes got companies to comply with pollution controls by raising their output limits.

In 1999 the EPA granted a licence to Roache ltd. for a hazardous waste incinerator near Ennis in Co. Clare without having received final design details of the incinerator plan. In July 2005 Cork Harbour residents and environmental groups attacked the EPA after it failed to alert the public that 56,000 gallons of caustic soda had leaked into the sea at the ADM plant in Ringaskiddy while the substance was being unloaded. In May 2003 The Agency was criticised for accepting the quality of drinking water in Kilkenny as satisfactory even though it was found to contain aluminium contaminations more than 100 times the EU limit.

Despite the fact that the granting of the IPPC licence seems like a fait accompli many Erris residents and Shell to Sea campaigners engaged with the process albeit with much frustration. The fact that the decision to grant the licence must be appealed to the very body that granted it was criticised by campaigners as was the fact that much of the information on which the decision to grant the licence came solely from Shell with no independent source. Highlighted too was the difference in resources available to the various parties: Shell, a corporation with an economy bigger than the size of the Irish Republic had a panel of suited experts and senior council on hand to talk Shell's way out of any potentially tricky questions; Shell to Sea campaigners and Erris residents, a mixture of fishermen, retired teachers, housewives and farmers lacking the funds to hire expert academics, relied mostly on their own non-expert research gleaned from six years of self education.

A major submission against the granting of the licence was made by An Taisce and centered on the fact that the refinery is situated in the catchment area of Carrowmore lake which provides a source of drinking water for 10,000 people in the Erris region. The submission was presented by Leo Corcoran, an experienced engineer who has worked for the gas technical standards committee and bord gais. It was Mr Corcoran's contention that the locating of the refinery in the catchment area of a drinking water source was in violation of the relevant code of practice. Mr Corcoran identified the failure of the minister to specify the relevant code of practice to the Corrib pipeline and refinery as a critical issue, stating that no other country in the western world would concider granting consent for such a project without a code of practice. He specified PD8010 as the code which should have been applied and then illustrated how Shell were in violation of that code, which stipulates that engineers must consider water catchment areas when selecting appropriate sites for facilities such as that proposed at Bellanaboy. Mr Corcoran cited Martin Marsden, head of water policy of Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA), "SEPA would normally recommend against placing such facilities at locations which could affect public drinking water." Mr Corcoran further questioned the applicant (Shell) under the 'fit persons provision' of the licencing terms citing the corporations global record with particular reference to their high record of fatalities.

The issue of the 'fit persons provision' in the licensing terms was one that the chairman of the hearing, Mr Frank Clinton, seemed touchy about, at an early stage he stated that for the puropse of the provision Shell's activities in other countries would not be considered. Given that Shell have virtually no history in Ireland as a producer with the exception of the Corrib gas project this decision seemed strange. It is expected that nexts week's submissions will deal with the issue of Shells record as a responsible contractor under the fit person provision. A more detailed account of the proceedings will follow as the hearing progresses...

 #   Title   Author   Date 
   Thanks     Clare    Wed Apr 25, 2007 09:11 
   -     Cathal    Wed Apr 25, 2007 11:01 
   Good to get updates     mel-cork    Wed Apr 25, 2007 11:24 
   EPA - my arse!     Jack    Thu Apr 26, 2007 00:14 
   Iontach ar fad Eve!     Eoin Ó Broin    Thu Apr 26, 2007 14:59 

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