Welcome to the first edition of the Roche Ireland Ltd Clarecastle Project Updates.
The purpose of these Updates is to keep you informed of the work involved in demolition and remediation of the Roche site at Clarehill, Clarecastle, Co Clare. Each edition will outline the work underway at that specific point and also give you insights into the technical elements of the project.
We will also introduce you to the people who are working diligently to ensure that the project is completed to the highest standards.
As an introduction, my name is Joe Murphy. I am the current project owner on the Clarecastle site having recently taken over from Gerry Cahill, who was the Managing Director and project owner.
The Clarecastle Site
Roche Corporate Values
The Decommissioning Project
Project Phases / The Project in Pictures
Note: Project timelines are indicative only and subject to change based on regulatory requirements or Covid-19 restrictions/requirements.
1. Clean to Shell
All phases of the project are managed by a Roche project team, led by the Project Manager; this team is supported by external contractors. All operations are being carried out to the highest safety and environmental standards.
Phase 1 - Clean to Shell
The first phase of the project, ‘Clean to Shell’ involved:
- Cleaning any residual contamination from the equipment, either in place or by removing it to a dedicated area for treatment;
- Removing the equipment and piping from the buildings using specialised mechanised equipment to ensure that the process was carried out in the safest possible manner as possible; and
- Sorting this material into various categories, for example, metal, timber etc., before transporting it off-site for recycling or disposal.
This phase was completed in June 2021.
Aerial views of the Tank Farm and Contractors' Compound before and after demolition.
Machinery used during the 'Clean to Shell' and 'Demolition' phases - Brokk demolition robot used to remove equipment from buildings (left) and high-reach machine being used during demolition (right).
Phase 2 – Demolition
The demolition phase is scheduled to be completed by March 2022.
Phase 3 - Remediation
A Changing Skyline
While the 'Clean to Shell' phase has not had any visual impact, the next phase, the 'Demolition' phase, will have a big impact, as the skyline that we have all been so familiar with over the past 45 years will change.
The photos below provide an example of the changes that can be expected once the 'Demolition' phase is completed towards the end of the year. The photos on the right show how the skyline view from the R458 will change.
Facilitating Clare Fire and Rescue Service Training
It was very fitting, given Roche Clarecastle’s long association with Clare Fire and Rescue Service, that we were able to respond to a request from Chief Fire Officer, Denis O’Connell, to facilitate a breathing apparatus (BA) training exercise in the now-empty Research & Administration (R&A) building on site. The unusual layout of the building was perfect for this type of training and marked the final use of the building.