In a move that will see much of the public consultation period happening during the festive season, the Dublin Airport Authority have submitted an infrastructure planning application in the last week.
With over 7,000 documents and 700 maps submitted as part of the application it is massive in scale and complexity.
The public now have until January 29th to absorb this mammouth application and form objections and observations, under the timelines set out in planning law.
The aim of this application is to prepare the airport for an expansion in the number of passengers from 32 million to 40 million.
Cllr Ian Carey said:
“We know about this application because the DAA were in a position to launch a PR campaign on it in advance of actually submitting it. That clearly shows the DAAs priorities in this instance.
“It’s clear when dealing with the DAA that we are dealing with an organisation that will try to ram through it’s own agenda in whatever way it can. If that means dumping planners, and the public, under a blizzard of paperwork during Christmas week then they will do it.
“Creating the infrastructure to massively expand Dublin Airport from 32 million passengers to 40 million is not a regular planning application. It’s a mega project and it needs to be treated differently so the public can properly appreciate the need for and the clear risks of expanding aviation in Ireland.
“Fundamentally, any expansion in aviation is not compatible with stopping runaway climate change. It’s not even compatible with the industry’s own plans to get to zero emissions.
“We should be very careful about expanding our airport and our wider economy in a way that we know is unsustainable. That will only imbed instability in our econony . It’s building a house of cards.
“I want to see a realistic timeline put on this application and a proper public debate, fuelled by independent analysis of the need to expand aviation.”