Draft Marine Planning Policy Statement

Posted by on Jun 17, 2019 in News | Comments Off on Draft Marine Planning Policy Statement

The Department of Housing, Planning & Local Government has published for Consultation the Draft Marine Planning Policy Statement.

Image of the front cover of the Cover of Marine Planning Policy Statement issued by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government

Cover of Marine Planning Policy Statement issued by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government issued on 10th June 2019.

The Draft Statement which invites submissions up and until midday on Friday, 9 August 2019 describes the existing components of Ireland’s marine planning system; the vision for the future development of Ireland’s marine planning system; the overarching policies and principle and; sets out high-level priorities for the enhancement of the marine planning system in Ireland.

The policy statement sets out a number of initiatives which are under way which should radically transform and modernise Ireland’s marine planning system so that it is more integrated, fully plan-led, clearly structured and user friendly for all marine stakeholders.

The introduction of a new national marine plan – the National Marine Planning Framework (NMPF) is a critical part of effecting this transition, as will be the Marine Planning and Development Management Bill, (formerly known as the MAFA Bill).

The NMPF will serve as a parallel to the National Planning Framework, setting out the Government’s long-term planning objectives and priorities for the management of our seas over a 20-year time frame. A draft NMPF is expected to be published in Q3 2019 with the final plan due before end 2020.

The Government is also developing new legislation to modernise elements of the marine development management and enforcement systems. The Marine Planning and Development Management Bill 2019 (formerly the Maritime Area and Foreshore (Amendment) Bill) will, introduce powers for the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government to put in place statutory marine planning guidelines (parallel to statutory planning guidelines under Section 28 of the Planning and Development Act 2000).

The statement sets out the following priorities for an integrated marine planning system.

a). An up-to-date, robust legislative framework
b). An integrated marine forward plan as a parallel to the National Planning Framework
c). Greater awareness and understanding of the marine planning system / marine planning processes
d). Transparent and fair decision-making
e). Robust Governance and enforcement systems to support quality marine planning outcomes

For more information please contact the Fehily Timoney Energy & Planning Team at info@nullftco.ie.



Expanding Fehily Timoney takes over AGEC and doubles its geotechnical team expertise

Posted by on May 7, 2019 in News, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Expanding Fehily Timoney takes over AGEC and doubles its geotechnical team expertise

Internationally-renowned consulting engineering and environmental scientists, Fehily Timoney and Company, (FT), has taken over Applied Ground Engineering Consultant’s (AGEC) services, an investment which significantly increases the size of its geotechnical team.
FT and AGEC have worked together on major projects across Ireland and the UK for over 20 years. Their combined capabilities and experience offers a broad, competitive range of geotechnical and multi-disciplinary services to existing and new clients in Ireland, the UK and across the globe, FT MD, Eamon Timoney, says.

FT hired 21 staff last year alone. And as work progresses on its extensive portfolio and several of its larger projects, such as the €100 million Dunkettle Interchange in Cork and the €75 million N4 in Sligo, staff numbers at FT could increase from just over 70 to closer to 80 in the not too distant future, Mr Timoney anticipates.

Image of Fehily Timoney team in Carlow for the announcement of AGEC takeover

Pictured from left to right: Gerry Kane (Senior Geotechnical Engineer), Ian Higgins (Principal Geotechnical Engineer), Tanya Ruddy (Principal Scientist), Ray O’Dwyer (Director), Niamh Deehan (Human Resources Manager), Eamon Timoney (Managing Director), Beren De Hora (Director), Paul Jennings (Technical Director), David McHugh (Director), Paul O’Reilly (Civil Engineering Technician), Tom Clayton (Senior Geotechnical Engineer)

“The AGEC take over doubles the size of our geotechnical team and complements FT’s specialised geotechnical engineering design and consultancy services and our expertise in the Infrastructure, Renewable Energy, Waste Management and Urban Development sectors.

“Our geotechnical team can now provide a full range of Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology services. This includes earthworks design for major infrastructure such as highways and railway; design of earthworks and structures on soft ground and shallow and deep foundations for buildings and structures – including deep basements. The expansion of our geotech team further enhances our export suitability for use in UK and abroad.

“We combine our Geotechnical capabilities with state of the art GIS data management software to effectively present geotechnical information. We have particular expertise in the provision of windfarm geotechnical services, including peat stability assessment and turbine foundation design,” Mr Timoney added.

Commenting on the take-over, AGEC MD, Turlough Johnston, said: “This development augurs well for the industry and will give our clients access to a greater range of services. Our staff have come together to offer an unrivalled, specialist service and an expert group of engineers and scientists. We have the up-to-date knowledge of best practice, latest technologies and industry trends, to guarantee an exceptionally high quality service throughout the lifecycle of a project from site investigation to feasibility and detailed design to on-site supervision and completion.”

AGEC Director Paul Jennings is excited about the range of geotechnical services that the combined team can now offer: “We now have capabilities to provide more complex solutions, including peat slope stability assessment and repair of slope failures; landfill geotechnics; numerical modelling and temporary works design. We routinely procure, manage and supervise site investigation works, prepare interpretative and design reports and provide geotechnical expert services.”

The firms previously worked together on projects such as the €420 million Kilgallioch Wind Farm in Scotland. FT were employed by Farrans Construction to act as Civil/Structural and Geotechnical designers on the works in Stranraer by Scottish Power Renewables, a unit of Iberdrola. AGEC supported the ground investigation and design of the turbine bases for the project .

The teams also worked together on Ireland’s largest wind farm, Galway Wind Park. It was co-developed by SSE and Coillte in Connemara’s Cloosh Valley. FT carried out extensive environmental assessments, including ecology, hydrology, geotechnical and engineering fieldwork with AGEC. The project included detailed design, transformer bases, hard standing areas and wind monitoring mast bases.

Through the extended expertise and experience of the additional personnel, FT now offers a comprehensive in-house service to clients for both public sector projects and private sector design/build/operate projects in all geotechnical aspects of any civil works, including the discipline of geotechnical engineering and engineering geology.

Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS)

Posted by on Jul 30, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS)

Irish government’s Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS) prioritises technology diversity



The government this week published its High Level Design paper on the new Renewables support mechanism, RESS, which will replace the previous approach that guaranteed fixed prices for the generation of renewable electricity.   It had been well signalled that RESS would be an auction-based system, whereby the level of support would be determined by competitive bidding between renewable energy generators. However, there was less clarity on the approach to support a mix of renewable technologies, leading to much speculation in the industry. This is addressed, with the likely approach being a “cap on single technology” in the auction process, which will put an upper limit on the proportion of capacity that will be available for a single technology. This will favour the less-established technologies of Solar PV and Off-shore Wind. The independent economic analyses that informed the design of RESS had noted the advantages of increasing technology diversity, which is an explicit policy objective in the government paper, while also noting that additional costs associated with achieving this, viz. “RES-E diversity… doesn’t come for free”.

The first auction (RESS-1) will take place in 2019 but will not include a single technology cap. It will prioritise projects that can be build and energised by the end of 2020, with the aim of closing the gap on Ireland’s 2020 RES targets. A total of 1,000 GW/hrs will be auctioned off in RESS-1, which according to scenarios in the government paper, would require between 500 – 1,000 installed MW of renewables. The second auction (RESS-2), in 2020, will include the single technology cap and will be for a total of 3,000 GW/hr and can be expected to include a significant amount of Solar PV and Offshore Wind.

Increased community participation in, and ownership of, renewable energy projects are incorporated in the design of RESS and this would be expected to have a beneficial impact on renewable energy projects across the country, especially in terms of community acceptance. After RESS-1, it is proposed that between 5 – 15% of each auction volume would be set aside for “community led projects”, with the specific policy objective of “community ownership of renewable electricity projects”.

The government document is available to download here.

Tipperary WES

Posted by on Jan 12, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Tipperary WES



TippFehily Timoney & Company (FTC) are delighted to note the shortlisting of the Tipperary County Council’s Renewable Energy Scheme in the Irish Planning Institute 2017/2018 Planning Awards. The scheme is shortlisted under the plan making category which represents the best projects of the art and science of spatial planning in the Country.   FTC developed the Wind Energy Strategy (WES) element of the overall scheme, and in conjunction with CAAS were involved in undertaking an update of the Landscape Character Assessment (LCA) for the County to determine the capacity of each landscape area to accommodate wind energy development.


The WES has replaced the previous Wind Energy Strategies of the North Tipperary and South Tipperary County Development Plans. The aim of this Strategy is to build upon its predecessors and develop an updated, county-wide tool for identifying potentially suitable locations for wind energy development and to guide future assessment of wind energy planning applications in the county. The Strategy also takes account of new technologies in wind energy development that have evolved since previous strategies were prepared.

The Irish Planning Institute will be announcing the winner on the 8th of February 2018.

Engagement on Wind Energy is Compulsory

Posted by on Oct 24, 2017 in News | Comments Off on Engagement on Wind Energy is Compulsory



Fehily Timoney & Company are strong believers in the benefits of consultation, as discussed in the current edition of ‘Council Review’ in an article titled ‘Engagement on Wind Energy is Compulsory’.


Proposals contained in the recently-published draft approach to update the Wind Energy Development Guidelines, which make community engagement compulsory on wind projects, will benefit local authorities, developers and the public and will significantly cut down on planning delays.


Fehily Timoney & Company’s past experience has shown that early engagement with the public and local authorities has proved invaluable.

The article is on page 107 of the magazine. Follow this link.

Geoscience Ireland

Posted by on Oct 23, 2017 in News | Comments Off on Geoscience Ireland


Geoscience Ireland logo

Fehily Timoney & Company have recently become members of Geoscience Ireland (GI).

GI is a network of 34 companies, delivering integrated expertise in water, minerals, environmental and infrastructure development to clients in over 50 countries. GI is supported by the Geological Survey of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland. The GI network provides design, consultancy and contracting services to multilateral agencies, governments and the private sector.

Write-up in Buisnessworld.ie

Posted by on Jul 21, 2017 in News | Comments Off on Write-up in Buisnessworld.ie


Fehily Timoney & Company are delighted with the article, (see below) by Robert McHugh which featured today on ‘Buisnessworld.ie’. A link to the original article can be found here.



Written by Robert McHugh, on 21st Jul 2017.


Eamon on a BridgeAn Irish consulting engineering and environmental scientists firm involved in the design of Scotland’s second largest wind farm, has now won a major infrastructural project just north of Glasgow.

It’s one of the largest roads projects the diverse Irish firm has ever undertaken in Scotland and a major boost to the firm’s 50 plus staff based at its Cork and Dublin offices and elsewhere.

The project involves the design of a new off-line bypass to the east of the town of Dalry in Ayrshire and associated junctions to connect to the existing A737 trunk road.

The 279 MW Kilgallioch Wind Farm is the largest wind farm recently completed in Scotland and its second largest ever. It includes 96 turbines and when complete and has the capacity to power 130,000 homes.

The works will see engineering staff at the Cork-headquartered firm design the bypass, with roundabouts at Hillend and Highfield, and a 250 meter viaduct over the River Garnock and the Glasgow to Ayr railway line. Design works are also required to connect the new bypass to the existing A737 trunk road east of Highfield.

The 279 MW Kilgallioch Wind Farm is the largest wind farm recently completed in Scotland and its second largest ever. It includes 96 turbines and when complete and has the capacity to power 130,000 homes.

The works will see engineering staff at the Cork-headquartered firm design the bypass, with roundabouts at Hillend and Highfield, and a 250 meter viaduct over the River Garnock and the Glasgow to Ayr railway line. Design works are also required to connect the new bypass to the existing A737 trunk road east of Highfield.

Speaking yesterday, Fehily Timoney MD, Eamon Timoney said, “This is a fantastic win for our team. We’ve also looking at a number of other significant Transport Scotland roads projects – including the A9. It’s all in line with our corporate strategy of focusing our personnel and expertise in Northern Ireland and Scotland. This will continue as we wait for the Irish infrastructural market to recover. This project win may not lead to significant new hires right now but it boosts our profile in Scotland and it allows us to retain our diverse, experienced team.”

Source: www.businessworld.ie 


Draft Wind Energy Guidelines

Posted by on Jun 19, 2017 in News | Comments Off on Draft Wind Energy Guidelines

Draft Wind Energy Guidelines

Draft wind energy guidelines address concerns of local communities but will reduce energy yield from sites



The government this week provided some details on a preferred draft approach for the updated Wind Energy Development Guidelines.  It will be early 2018 before the new guidelines are finalised and they will then replace the previous 2006 edition.  The key aspects have been well covered in the press and include:

  • More stringent noise limit;
  • New Visual Amenity Setback (4 times the turbine height with a minimum distance of 500 metres);
  • ZERO shadow flicker; and
  • New obligations in relation to engagement with local communities

The government press release provides some details and are analysed by Fehily Timoney experts below.


More Stringent Noise Limits

The 2006 Guidelines provided guidance on daytime and night-time noise limits, with separate noise limits for each period.   The proposed approach adopts more stringent noise limits: it provides for a relative rated noise limit of 5dB(A) above existing background noise within the range of 35 dB(A) to a maximum of 43dB(A). Noise limits will be applicable for both daytime and night-time periods. The noise limits are described as a ‘rated’ limit and they will take account of certain noise characteristics specific to wind turbines (e.g. tonal, low frequency and amplitude modulation). Where these characteristics are identified, the noise limit permitted will be further reduced to mitigate for these noise characteristics.


The noise limits derived using the proposed approach will be below the 2006 wind energy development guidelines and implementation of the proposed approach could result in reduced energy yield from a site. The reduced energy yield will result from either a reduced number of turbines and/or curtailment of some turbines to meet the more stringent noise limits.   An important detail to watch out for is the definition of the noise indicator e.g. LA90 or LAeq.  This is particularly relevant information as for wind turbine noise, a noise limit of 43 dB LAeq is equivalent to a noise limit of 41 dB LA90.



Visual Amenity Setback

The Wind Energy Development Guidelines (2006) did not indicate a specific setback distance but instead recommended that “sufficient distance should be maintained from farmsteads, houses and centres of population in order to ensure that wind energy developments do not visually dominate them.”   The proposed approach is to introduce a setback distance of 4 times the tip height, between a wind turbine and the curtilage of a residential property, subject to a mandatory minimum setback of 500 metres.  Although visual presence of a development is based on a number of aspects beyond simply scale in relation to distance, the recommended setback distance for visual amenity will need to be incorporated as a constraint on the design of the wind farm.  This will likely result in lower turbines (potentially just at the periphery of developments) or increased site curtailment.  The impact will be reduced energy yield from a site.



Zero Tolerance Policy on Shadow Flicker

Whereas the 2006 Guidelines recommended constraints on shadow flicker (max. 30 hours per year or 30 minutes per day at any dwelling/offices within 500m of turbines), the new guidelines are stricter.  The draft approach mandates that shadow flicker should be eliminated.  Under such a constraint, if shadow flicker conditions were to arise at any receptor, turbine control measures would need to be applied to shut down the turbine for the duration of the shadow flicker event. Such turbine shutdown would reduce the operating time of the affected turbines, decreasing the total power output of the wind farm.


If you would like more information on this and discuss the potential implications on your proposed development please contact FT Energy Planning Team on 021 496 4133.


Cork Docklands Local Area Plan

Posted by on May 31, 2017 in News | Comments Off on Cork Docklands Local Area Plan

Cork Docklands


Cork City Council has commenced the preparation of the Draft Local Area Plan for Cork City Docks 2018 and the Draft Local Area Plan for Tivoli Docks 2018.

These plans will provide the blueprint for development of the Cork City Docklands both to the north and south of the River Lee.

Cork City Council has opened pre-plan consultations and are inviting stakeholders and interested parties to identify key issues that need to be addressed in the plan including housing, employment, infrastructure, place-making, climate change and sustainability.

Public consultation runs from the 29th of MaCork Doclands 2y until the 7th of July 2017.

Fehily Timoney and Company (FT) has extensive experience in making Local Area Plan submissions and acting as stakeholder advocates offering a multi-disciplined approach to the enhancement and protection of your property interest.

For more information and to learn about the importance of early engagement in the planning process please contact Jim Hughes, Associate Director at Jim.Hughes@nullftco.ie.


ACEI Design Excellence Awards 2017

Posted by on May 12, 2017 in News | Comments Off on ACEI Design Excellence Awards 2017

Overseas Category Winner – Kilgallioch Windfarm, Scotland



ACEI Awards Dinner Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin. Picture Colm Mahady / Fennells - Copyright© Fennell Photography 2017

ACEI Awards Dinner Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin.
Picture Colm Mahady / Fennells – Copyright© Fennell Photography 2017

Fehily Timoney  & Company are delighted to announce that on the 31st of March, we were announced as the winners of the overseas category at the ACEI Design Excellence Awards, for our contribution to the Kilgallioch Windfarm in Scotland. The award ceremony was held  in the Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin and the competition was fierce as we were up against some very reputable international firms. Our team worked very hard over a number of years to complete this project in conjunction with Farrans. This award is recognition for all the long hours that our team invested in this project and we would like to congratulate all involved.

Fehily Timoney & Company  completed the detailed design of Kilgallioch Wind Farm in South Ayrshire, Scotland, a project with a capital cost of £300 million. The two-year project involves the design and construction of 65km of access road to serve turbine delivery vehicles and maintenance access, large quantities of steel reinforcement and concrete for the construction of 96 turbine bases. The impressive job also includes 400km of HV cabling, construction of an 800m2 control building and 410 hectares of tree clearance. The site covers an area of approximately 33km2.Following a tender competition for which FT optimised the preliminary design, a Design and Build contract (£42 million) was awarded to Farrans Construction in June 2015 with FT acting as detailed designer for the project.

FTs brief comprised:

  •  The design of 96 turbines bases requiring 45,000m3 of reinforced concrete;
  •  Alignment design of 65km of internal road in challenging ground conditions;
  •  Design of crane hard standings and blade laydown areas for each turbine;
  •  Sustainable drainage design for access roads, bases and hard standings;
  •  Design of environmental mitigation;
  •  Design of culverts and bridges structures; and
  •  Design for the extraction of 1.2 million tonnes of rock from six on-site quarries.


Fehily Timoney Fehily Timoney