President Donald Trump gained global notoriety for expressing his desire to build a wall to keep immigrants out of the United States. But another wall is within his reach first.
The planning authorities in County Clare have now approved the billionaire’s bid to build another wall, one around his Doonbeg golf course on the West Coast of Ireland.
A man-made defense wall will help protect his golf links against severe Atlantic storms. Weather has had drastic implications on Doonbeg and the neighboring beach and dunes in recent years.
Clare County Council has today issued a decision to grant permission for the development of coastal erosion management works at, and adjacent to, Carrowmore Dunes, White Strand, Doughmore Bay and Trump International Golf Links and Hotel, Doonbeg, Clare pic.twitter.com/kch6i5GxUR— Clare County Council (@ClareCoCo) December 21, 2017
In a statement, Clare County Council said they have “today issued a decision to grant permission for the development of coastal erosion management works at, and adjacent to, Carrowmore Dunes, White Strand, Doughmore Bay and Trump International Golf Links and Hotel, Doonbeg, Co. Clare."
The Council added that the decision can be appealed within four weeks.
As part of the plan, a 1km (0.6 mile) wall of metal sheet piles and limestone boulders will be erected. The defense wall is stated to be disguised, covered by sand and cobble stones.
President Trump must pay over €265,000 (approximately $315,000) for Clare County Council to cover the costs associated with changing and repairing the public infrastructure surrounding his property.
The onus will be on resort management to monitor the impact on the Carrowmore dune system, its plants and animals, the impact on beach users, and protect the surfers’ right of way passage which runs through the Doonbeg links.
Breaking: Trump granted permission to build wall*. https://t.co/PkkpY8HJ3g— Richard Chambers🎙 (@newschambers) December 21, 2017
(*Well, no, not that one... It’s in west Clare, Ireland. It’s 1km and his company argued it was totally necessary because of climate change.)
Eamon Ryan, leader of The Green Party, and Tony Lowes of Friends of the Irish Environment have urged for the decision to be appealed by An Bord Pleanála, the Irish planning board.
"This was always about protecting the dune ecosystem and the ecology of this most sensitive coastline site. Building a barrier in the middle of the beach is going to change the whole way the dune system works,” Ryan stated.
The dune system is home to the microscopic narrow-mouthed whorl snail, a minute land snail that is increasingly rare.
Lowes, who challenged the original plan, added, "This should have been about trying to get the golf course to evolve to the changing dune system and not destroying what is a natural process.”
“Any intervention through physical barriers will impede the natural evolution of the dune system and put at risk protected species, even without considering the loss to Doughmore strand and its great dunes,” he concluded.