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Corrib Gas Project: Meetings to take place with Royal Dutch Shell

The Mayo News

MONDAY, 16 MARCH 2009

Community groups to have sit-down meeting with Royal Dutch Shell 

Anton McNulty

FOR the first time in the long-running Corrib gas saga, community groups opposed to the project are to sit down with representatives of Royal Dutch Shell to try to resolve issues in relation to the project.

Yesterday (Monday) Minister Eamon Ryan and Minister Éamon Ó Cuív announced that community representatives Pobal Chill Chomáin and Pobal Le Chéile will meet representatives of Shell E&P Ireland (SEPIL) and and its parent company Royal Dutch Shell at the Department of Community Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs in Dublin this Friday. 

The meeting will be attended by both Ministers and will be chaired by Mr Joe Brosnan. A statement from the Ministers said they hope that all parties will enter the talks in a positive and open manner, and have agreed that the meeting will be conducted in an even-handed way and that it will have an open agenda with no predetermined outcome.

The meeting was welcomed by both Pobal Chill Chomáin and Pobal Le Chéile who said that they were at all times committed to an agreed solution to the Corrib dispute which takes into account the concerns and the long-term sustainability of the community.

Pobal Chill Chomáin spokesperson, John Monaghan, said they were going to put the views of the community to the ‘decision-makers’ in Royal Dutch Shell and hoped it will be the ‘start of a solution’.

He said they had been in focused ongoing discussions with Mr Brosnan when it became obvious to them that they could not take part in the Community Forum. He said they had called for open dialogue for years and the views of the community were central to any solution. 

“We will meet with representatives of Royal Dutch Shell, which was very attractive to us. We will be putting our views directly to the decision-makers and that was the major selling point. We all want a solution but the Community Forum was not going to solve anything. We won’t be negotiating anything but we will be putting our view to the highest level, which has not happened to date. This had to happen eventually,” he said.

In a statement SEPIL announced it will be attending the meeting and reiterated its ‘commitment of entering into dialogue with any group or individuals that have outstanding concerns relating to the Corrib gas project and will participate in a positive and open manner in these talks’.

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