Demolition works at former oil terminal on Courtbrack Avenue halted

Limerick Solicitor and Environment Trust Ireland President Michelle Hayes

DEMOLITION works involving the removal of up to 18 fuel storage tanks at a former oil terminal on Courtbrack Avenue were stopped this week by an enforcement notice issued by Limerick City and County Council.

The eight-acre plot was formerly a SEVESO site under the EU Control of Major Accidents involving Dangerous Substances Regulations. Last year, Circle K applied for planning permission for demolition works and removal of the fuel storage tanks from the former Shell / Topaz oil storage depot.

Limerick-based solicitor, Michelle Hayes, who is also President of Environmental Trust Ireland, acknowledged the prompt action taken by the Enforcement Department of Limerick City and County Council once the planning breach was brought to its attention.

“Planning Permission was granted in June 2022, however, Circle K Ireland Energy Ltd did not comply with the conditions of planning,” she explained.

“The removal of tanks would require proper environmental assessments and permissions. If these are not available, this would constitute a serious breach of EU law and in particular, the EIA Directive, the Habitats Directive, the Water Framework Directive etc.”

Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter

Environmental Trust Ireland raised concerns in relation to the removal of the oil tanks on the former SEVESO site. They sought clarification in relation to the relevant permission/ licence obtained and requested a copy of the relevant information.

“Following investigation by Limerick City and County Council, a Planning Enforcement Notice was issued today and served on Circle K Ireland Energy Ltd and O’ Kelly Brothers Civil Engineering Ltd for non compliance with condition no’s 4 and 5 attached to Planning reference 22/340 at the Former Oil Terminal, Dock Road and Courtbrack Avenue, South Circular Road, Limerick,” Ms Hayes added.

These conditions related to environmental reports and waste management plans including asbestos waste which had not been provided.”