Fianna Fáil TD for Meath East Thomas Byrne has said his party remains committed to commencing an independent review of the North – South Interconnector if in Government.

Deputy Byrne made the comments following the conclusion of a High Court challenge against An Bord Pleanála’s handling of the issue.

Deputy Byrne said, “Fianna Fáil has long maintained that the Government approach to the North – South Interconnector simply isn’t good enough. They have attempted to push through this plan without taking on board some of the serious concerns that have been raised by people living in the local communities along the interconnector route. It’s of utmost importance that these concerns are taken on board.

“Fianna Fáil tabled a motion in the Dáil last February calling for an independent review of this project to be carried out. The Government tabled an amendment seeking to disregard our request. This amendment was defeated by 76 – 60 votes, which clearly signals that the will of the Dáil is for an independent review to be carried out. Fianna Fáil remains committed to implementing such a review and I repeat my call on the Government for one to be established without any further delay.

“Greater consideration needs to be given to the idea of undergrounding the project. This can be achieved by launching an independent review to take on board all of the latest available information on the feasibility of placing the interconnector underground,” concluded Deputy Byrne.