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The ESB has announced that two of its peat-fired power stations, in Shannonbridge, Co. Offaly and Lanesboro in Longford, are to cease operations in December of 2020.

The electricity generating plants currently burn up to two million tonnes of peat per year and employ 80 people across the two stations.

The ESB had hoped to convert to burning a mixture of peat and biomass in the two midlands based stations, but the application was denied by An Bord Pleanála.

Given the planning, environmental and commercial issues associated with biomass, the electricity provider announced that there is no viable business model beyond 2020.

-Daniel Potter