Two years ago a friend of a friend approached the government asking about the contract to produce and distribute Biodiesels after the government announced that they were seeking tenders for someone to do just that as part of their ongoing commitment to the Kyoto protocols. This bloke was told that there would be one contract awarded (therefore creating yet another government sanctioned monopoly revealing their commitment to ensuring value to the irish customer) and he was not going to be getting it. In a development that came as no surprise to anyone at all, Shell got the contract.
Fast forward a year. There is no biodiesel at the pumps, no sign of it coming and no movement made on the production and distribution front. Shell had done their feasability study and surprise surprise had determined that there was no demand for it. The bloke inquired of the government about this and asked if they'd be tendering the contract again on the basis that nothing had been done and was informed that no, it was done and dusted and no further tendering would be done.
Skip forward a bit more to about two months ago when the government rejected a contract OFFERED to them to be the biggest and probably sole producer of the machinery used to produce and distribute biodiesel and they turned it down. This morning it was reported that Ireland was doing squat to achieve the new emission limits under the Kyoto protocol. In theory, we would have led the world in this field, a field which there is absolutely no doubt will become an absolute necessity within the next few years and which would, through massively decreased fuel prices and revenue generated, have made the celtic tiger look like a pissant operation.
Needless to say, efforts to make the area surrounding the corrib gas line as incredibly dangerous to the populace within ten miles as possible plough on regardless.
Oh yeah, and McDowell's "get de darkies out of here" bill was illegal but thats another story entirely.