Serious concerns have been raised about health and the environment in Co. Leitrim this week after it emerged that Imagine had signed off on a deal to roll out 5G countywide.

So opposed are residents in the county to the move, a notice of motion in respect of the matter received the unanimous backing of all locally elected representatives during a recently held county council meeting.

Local representatives say that Leitrim County Council must now stand “shoulder to shoulder” with the elected members on this issue and ensure that – when the time comes – the local authority rejects any planning application by Imagine in respect of the project’s rollout.

Cllr Justin Warnock – who put forward the notice of motion in the first instance – says people in Co. Leitrim have not been informed on any level about the rollout and there are serious concerns for the health of the county’s citizens.

A focus on health

He pointed to the health implications associated with 5G and highlighted how fiber broadband would be a much “safer and healthier option”.

Our attitude is that if there is doubt at all that 5G has an impact on health or the environment then it should not be rolled out.

He continued: “The rollout will have to go through a planning stage and the only thing that Leitrim County Council can do is to stop those masts from being erected.

“Because the motion has been passed unanimously the local area representatives in Leitrim would expect that the local authority will stand shoulder to shoulder with us on this issue.

“Imagine is the company behind the rollout.”

‘No consultation; no information’

Meanwhile, Warnock pointed to the “talk” that is taking place about how the antenna for the 5G rollout will be installed on lamp posts, bus shelters and wheelie bins.

For God’s sake…the people of Leitrim haven’t even had a say in this and now they want to stick antennas on their wheelie bins.

“There was no consultation process and no information made available to us.

“My understanding is that 5G is treacherous to wildlife and insects too.

“In this day and age, when we are being told that we are in a biodiversity crisis, what sense does it make to throw 5G in on top of that?

“I don’t understand it at all…”

The environment and the land

The local area representative in north Leitrim also pointed to the environment and the impact 5G may or may not have on that.

If 5G is going to have such a detrimental impact on the environment then it is going to have a very bad impact on the health of people living in areas where it is being rolled out.

He added: “The coniferisation of our county has also led to the acidification of our soils.

“This has leached into the rivers and has a detrimental effect on the fish population.”

Warnock, meanwhile, is no stranger to fighting the good fight for the people of Leitrim or for the people of rural Ireland either.

He was part of the Love Leitrim campaign that secured a national ban on fracking just a couple of years ago.

Also Read: ‘Strong signal from Leitrim that fracking is not welcome’

“We have very high cancer rates in this country and we should be trying to examine what is causing the problem rather than bringing in something that we know is a problem,” he concluded.