Clare County Council in western Ireland is to vote today on a controversial rezoning that will, if passed, pave the way for an €85m ($110m) combined heat and power plant (CHP) in Shannon, County Clare.

As part of a new draft of the Shannon Local Area Plan, the council is planning to rezone a large tract of land at Stonehall, north of the Shannon Free Zone.

A private firm, Carbon Sole Industries, has already provided local briefings on its plan to construct the 60-70MW CHP plant in Shannon, and the rezoning is necessary for a planning application to be lodged, reports the Irish Times.

The project is to generate electricity from biodegradable waste and meet a growing demand for reliable power in the region.

The rezoning requires a majority of councillors to vote in favour.

Residents of the Stonehall area have been lobbying councillors in recent days to vote against the rezoning.

The rezoning is backed by county manager Tom Coughlan.

In the manager’s report circulated to councillors ahead of the meeting, it stated that the council would support and facilitate the development of the site “for a large-scale, strategic green energy development and distribution network to assist in the delivery of a low-carbon industrial, commercial and business environment, meeting the existing energy requirements of the town and business”.

For more combined heat and power news