Landscape Character Assessment & Wind Farm Development in Ireland

This paper is a detailed study into wind energy development in Ireland and how it has been influenced by the current status of Landscape Character Assessment, particularly with regard to the planning process.

The varying nature, quality and extent of LCA, county wide is examined through a series of case studies and a detailed comparison is made between the Irish and Danish approach. The surprisingly high level of different approaches and lack of interface between local authorities (bearing in mind that wind energy sites tend to be in mountainous areas close to county boarders) is demostrated.

The need for a national Landscape Character Map and national body to deal with all wind energy planning applications is highlightd and recommended.