Dáil Éireann - Volume 538 - 21 June, 2001

Written Answers. - Telecommunications Masts.

133. Dr. O'Hanlon asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government if he has satisfied himself with the planning guidelines for the erection of mobile telephone masts; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18403/01]

Minister for the Environment and Local Government (Mr. Dempsey): In July 1996, my Department issued guidelines for planning authorities on telecommunications antennae and support structures. The purpose of the guidelines was to assist planning authorities, An Bord Pleanála, operators of mobile telecommunications services and the general public by providing guidance on dealing with telecommunications masts and base stations within the planning system. The guidelines include a statement on health and safety aspects which the Departments of Health and Children and Public Enterprise agreed with my Department. Health aspects are dealt with by requiring operators, as part of their planning application, to furnish to the planning authority a statement of compliance with International Radiation Protection Association guidelines.

[1210] My remit relates to planning. Issues in relation to the health effects of mobile phones are a matter for the Department of Health and Children while those in relation to the auditing of radiation emissions from masts and base stations are a matter for the Office of the Director of Telecommunications Regulation.