Fishermen object to Shell Corrib plant

Crab fishermen in Broadhaven Bay are concerned that the Shell Corrib refinery could pollute the area's water, threatening their livelihoods.

The oil major is currently laying a pipeline through the bay, despite the concerns of locals and environmentalists, to bring gas to the onshore Corrib plant.

Despite the local beach being designated a Special Area of Conservation, Shell is to pass a pipeline through it. While this may anger environmentalists, many of whom have taken to the water to try to disrupt the pipe laying, the fishermen of the region are concerned for their immediate livelihoods.

Pat O’Donnell, a fourth generation fisherman told An Phoblacht: “My main concern is that the outflow from the Shell site could contaminate the waters of the bay.

“If Broadhaven Bay is contaminated by the discharge from the refinery, and even a slight trace of contamination shows up in the crabs, then the whole fishery will be closed down and that means the end for an awful lot of jobs. But not only jobs will go; a whole tradition will end.”

The government has sent the Naval ship the LE Orla to assist Shell.

Eight protestors were arrested on August 21, in what was called “the most dangerous” demonstration yet. Protestors surrounded pipe laying machinery and the Garda Water Unit wrestled with the protestors and worked with gas employees to capture them.

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