Open Letter to John Brassil TD
in relation to the following comments made by Mr. Brassil in the Kerryman Oct 05, 2019:
"For those making the argument that we should stop the project because it may import fracked gas, I would remind them that we already import gas from the UK, where there is an LNG terminal - do we ban it because it may be sourced from the fracking industry?
"Also, we're building a 500MW interconnector with France, where 80 per cent of the energy is generated using nuclear, which was banned here in 1999. People need to get real on realising gas is the best source of energy for the country's transition to, ultimately, 100-per-cent renewables,"
John Brassil TD
Dear Mr. Brassil
I am writing you this open letter in response to your outrageous comments in the Kerryman the last week. You said that the nation should “get real about importing fracked gas”. You never mentioned the €109,557.09 you received in expenses from Shannon development while you were a Kerry county councilor from 2005 to 2009, during which time Shannon development received €493,000 from Shannon LNG. You never mentioned the clear collusion between the county council and the engineering firm who carried out the screening process when the land was rezoned from “agricultural” to “industrial”, in order to avoid a strategic environmental assessment. This report didn’t even mention what the purpose of the “industrial” rezoning was for, and the engineering firm were apparently “never informed”. Are you still going to claim thirteen years later, as Kerry county county did at the time, that you “didn’t know whether they knew or not” the purpose of the rezoning when they carried out the screening?
I understand that you are a Pharmacist by profession Mr. Brassil. It is hard to believe however, that your comments in the Kerryman could have come from a man of science. Your words illustrate a clear abuse of logic in your thinking and a race to the bottom in your dismal vision for this country:
First of all, if there is a small portion of fracked gas in the energy mix of the UK that is coming into Ireland through the interconnector (UK LNG imports are 11% of total UK gas, the amount of this coming from fracked gas, it is hard to say for sure), this does not in any way justify opening an LNG port which will be pretty much EXCLUSIVELY from fracked shale gas. Any rational, sane public representative would be looking to DECREASE the amount of fracked gas in our energy mix, not INCREASE it. The science is now clear that shale gas extraction contributes to climate change more than any other energy source, pushing our climate system past irreversible tipping points. The Joint Oireachtas Committee on Climate Action just heard that fracked gas has a carbon footprint at least 44% greater than that of coal.
Secondly, Ireland does not currently receive electricity imports from French nuclear power and were we to in the future, it would not be the result of the will of the Irish people, but that of a political class unanswerable to the public and hell bent on an imperative of infinite economic growth and the consequent increasing energy use and exploitation of the third world which comes with this. You and your ‘coalition partners’ Fine Gael discarded the last shred of Irish neutrality without public mandate, when you covertly voted to sign Ireland up to PESCO. Ireland is now involved in France’s colonial war in Mali, a war that France is dragging other EU countries into because French nuclear power depends on the Uranium deposits within Mali’s borders. Ireland’s neutrality policy originated with your party, when the 26 counties had recently achieved political independence from colonial rule. Despite all of his faults, Eamon De Valera saw that Ireland, as a small nation in this position, could be an ambassador for peace and equality between nations. Seventy years later, your party put the first nail in the neutrality coffin when Bertie Ahern opened Shannon Airport up to the US military. Now Fine Gael and your party’s complicity in European neo-colonial ambitions in Africa has vanquished the last trace of Irish neutrality.
I think it reflects very badly on the journalistic standards of the Kerryman to give you, of all people, the last word on this topic without outlining your role in the rezoning. You, more than any other politician has benefitted financially by acting as a comprador middleman for this environmentally catastrophic project. That €109,577.09 is dirty money Mr. Brassil, and don’t insult the intelligence of your constituents by claiming otherwise. Thirteen years later and still no strategic environmental assessment has been carried out. I would advise you to think twice in future before voicing your paper thin arguments for Shannon LNG. A whole generation is watching you and all of your cohorts who act as brokers for parasitic multinationals.
Future Generations Kerry