The announcement last week from Bord na Móna that it would create 885 new jobs has been met with skepticism in some circles, with one TD claiming that “very few people have any faith” in the announcement.
Independent TD Carol Nolan argued that the Bord na Móna announcement “has been greeted with a large degree of skepticism and outright disbelief in communities right across” the midlands area.
The Laois-Offaly TD quipped: “Most ordinary workers and families listening to the recent announcement by Bord na Móna will not have greeted this with the kind of unrestrained enthusiasm the company was hoping for.
Nolan claimed that Bord na Móna “reneged and back-tracked on firm commitments regarding the time period of the Just Transition strategy, bringing it down from a manageable ten-year period to a few months, irrespective of the impact on employment”.
This, she asserted, was something the people in the region “will realise”.
Nolan went on to claim that those people will “remember the kind of treatment that part-time contractors received and they will have seen the capitulation of the company to an incoherent green agenda that, even as we speak, is threatening 17,000 jobs in the horticulture sector.
“Is that what a commitment to generating rural employment in renewables and the circular economy looks like?” she asked.
A significant portion of these jobs are set to go towards the construction of projects such as wind farms.
However, according to Nolan, there is “no way that these jobs or wind farms can be guaranteed when you factor in the right of local people to protest about their location and the complexity of our planning process”.
“The unfortunate reality is very many people in Offaly, Laois and the wider midlands region have lost faith in Bord na Móna. They simply do not believe that the company is genuinely out to protect their interests,” she claimed.