Friday, 6 September 2019

Questions (1525)

Maureen O'Sullivan


1525. Deputy Maureen O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the procedure in relation to the granting of permission for large-scale rocket blasting of rock; the purposes for which the practice is authorised; the person or body that authorises same; and the way in which it is managed and overseen with particular reference to the relevant legislation and or regulations governing same.; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [36163/19]

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Written answers (Question to Communications)

The use of blasting is the most efficient method for breaking large amounts of rock in mining and quarrying.

All operational mines and quarries are subject to conditions contained within their Integrated Pollution Control licences issued by the Environmental Protection Authority in regard to noise and vibration levels and environmental emissions resulting from blasting.

Mines and quarries are also subject to conditions contained within their Planning Permissions issued by the relevant local authority in regard to the times when blasting can take place. This comes within the area of responsibility of the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government.

The health, safety and welfare at work aspects of the use of explosives in mines and quarries is subject to oversight by the Health and Safety Authority under the provisions of the Safety, Health And Welfare At Work (Quarries) Regulations 2008 and the Safety, Health and Welfare At Work (Mines) Regulations 2018. These matters fall within the area of responsibility of the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation.