Apple has raised concerns about the delay in Ireland’s planning process in correspondence relating to the application for a data center in Athenry, Ireland, according to the Connacht Tribune. The tech giant has been seeking planning permission for an 850 million euro data center development in Athenry for almost three years.
Connacht Tribune says that briefing materials from September 2017 reveals that Apple had expressed concern about the “indeterminable nature” of the Irish planning process. Since the Cupertino, California-based company's application, an interdepartmental working group has been set up to examine the government’s approach to data centre developments.
Apple planned to start building the data center on a 500-acre site before the end of 2015. However, it was delayed when unhappy Irish citizens lodged formal complaints with the Irish government. Complainants argued that the data centre would increase noise and light pollution, flooding, and traffic.
Some also said it would act as an eyesore and others said it would harm the local badger and bat populations. They filed complaints with the Galway County Council, local planning body An Bord Pleanála, and the High Court.
If the Athenry facility ever actually gets a green light, it will be Apple's second European data center. The first is located in Viborg, Denmark and will go online later this year. Waste heat from the facility is being used to heat local homes, and some of the energy used is created by using agricultural waste.