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It would have created more than a hundred jobs and placed a medieval Irish town at the centre of Apple’s European operations, but the tech giant’s plans to build a £750 million ($AUD1365m) data centre in the country have been derailed by two residents.

The decision will dismay politicians and residents in Athenry, the town in Co Galway that would have hosted the facility. Hundreds of people have marched in support of the project, which would have provided computer power to fast-growing services such as Apple Music.

Mr Daly, a US-born engineer, and Ms Fitzpatrick, a solicitor, both objected because of environmental concerns. Mr Daly argued that the data centre, which would have been across a 500-acre site, could eat up as much as 6 per cent of the national grid’s electricity output and would have adversely affected Ireland’s ability to meets its EU targets for reducing CO2 emissions. The pair also claimed that the project, which would have been located in a forest, would have required a significant number of trees to be felled.

Leo Varadkar, the Irish prime minister, said Apple’s decision was a “real blow to Athenry and the west”. In a statement Apple said it was disappointed at scrapping the project but expressed its commitment to Ireland. “Despite our best efforts, delays in the approval process have forced us to make other plans and we will not be able to move forward with the data centre,” it said. “While disappointing, this setback will not dampen our enthusiasm for future projects in Ireland as our business continues to grow. We’re deeply committed to our employees and customers in Ireland and are expanding our operations in Cork, with a new facility for our talented team there.”

Heather Humphreys, the minister for business and enterprise, said the Irish government “very much regretted” Apple’s decision, saying that it would have been a “source of significant investment and job creation for Galway and the west of Ireland”. She added that the government did everything it could to support the investment. “This included high-level engagement with the company, both at home and abroad. Ultimately, in spite of these efforts, Apple has taken a commercial decision not to proceed, making it clear that the delays that beset this project caused them to reconsider their plans.”

Paul Keane, founder of the Facebook group Athenry for Apple, which has 6,000 members, told The Times that the decision was a “hammer blow” for the town. He was critical of Irish planning laws which, he said, could potentially deter future investment.

It would have created more than a hundred jobs and placed a medieval Irish town at the centre of Apple’s European operations, but the tech giant’s plans to build a £750 million ($AUD1365m) data centre in the country have been derailed by two residents.

The decision will dismay politicians and residents in Athenry, the town in Co Galway that would have hosted the facility. Hundreds of people have marched in support of the project, which would have provided computer power to fast-growing services such as Apple Music.

Mr Daly, a US-born engineer, and Ms Fitzpatrick, a solicitor, both objected because of environmental concerns. Mr Daly argued that the data centre, which would have been across a 500-acre site, could eat up as much as 6 per cent of the national grid’s electricity output and would have adversely affected Ireland’s ability to meets its EU targets for reducing CO2 emissions. The pair also claimed that the project, which would have been located in a forest, would have required a significant number of trees to be felled.

Leo Varadkar, the Irish prime minister, said Apple’s decision was a “real blow to Athenry and the west”. In a statement Apple said it was disappointed at scrapping the project but expressed its commitment to Ireland. “Despite our best efforts, delays in the approval process have forced us to make other plans and we will not be able to move forward with the data centre,” it said. “While disappointing, this setback will not dampen our enthusiasm for future projects in Ireland as our business continues to grow. We’re deeply committed to our employees and customers in Ireland and are expanding our operations in Cork, with a new facility for our talented team there.”

Heather Humphreys, the minister for business and enterprise, said the Irish government “very much regretted” Apple’s decision, saying that it would have been a “source of significant investment and job creation for Galway and the west of Ireland”. She added that the government did everything it could to support the investment. “This included high-level engagement with the company, both at home and abroad. Ultimately, in spite of these efforts, Apple has taken a commercial decision not to proceed, making it clear that the delays that beset this project caused them to reconsider their plans.”

Paul Keane, founder of the Facebook group Athenry for Apple, which has 6,000 members, told The Times that the decision was a “hammer blow” for the town. He was critical of Irish planning laws which, he said, could potentially deter future investment.

It would have created more than a hundred jobs and placed a medieval Irish town at the centre of Apple’s European operations, but the tech giant’s plans to build a £750 million ($AUD1365m) data centre in the country have been derailed by two residents.

The decision will dismay politicians and residents in Athenry, the town in Co Galway that would have hosted the facility. Hundreds of people have marched in support of the project, which would have provided computer power to fast-growing services such as Apple Music.

Mr Daly, a US-born engineer, and Ms Fitzpatrick, a solicitor, both objected because of environmental concerns. Mr Daly argued that the data centre, which would have been across a 500-acre site, could eat up as much as 6 per cent of the national grid’s electricity output and would have adversely affected Ireland’s ability to meets its EU targets for reducing CO2 emissions. The pair also claimed that the project, which would have been located in a forest, would have required a significant number of trees to be felled.

Leo Varadkar, the Irish prime minister, said Apple’s decision was a “real blow to Athenry and the west”. In a statement Apple said it was disappointed at scrapping the project but expressed its commitment to Ireland. “Despite our best efforts, delays in the approval process have forced us to make other plans and we will not be able to move forward with the data centre,” it said. “While disappointing, this setback will not dampen our enthusiasm for future projects in Ireland as our business continues to grow. We’re deeply committed to our employees and customers in Ireland and are expanding our operations in Cork, with a new facility for our talented team there.”

Heather Humphreys, the minister for business and enterprise, said the Irish government “very much regretted” Apple’s decision, saying that it would have been a “source of significant investment and job creation for Galway and the west of Ireland”. She added that the government did everything it could to support the investment. “This included high-level engagement with the company, both at home and abroad. Ultimately, in spite of these efforts, Apple has taken a commercial decision not to proceed, making it clear that the delays that beset this project caused them to reconsider their plans.”

Paul Keane, founder of the Facebook group Athenry for Apple, which has 6,000 members, told The Times that the decision was a “hammer blow” for the town. He was critical of Irish planning laws which, he said, could potentially deter future investment.