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Plan submitted for Buttington ERF

Created on 26/02/2021 @ 21:05

large scale energy project could be a step closer in Buttington as an official planning application was lodged by the developers behind the proposed Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) project.

Broad Energy (Wales) Limited has submitted its application for the ERF to the Planning Inspectorate following a lengthy period that has included public consultation, evidence gathering and research.

The company claims that the scheme will create 300 jobs during its construction phase and will employ 30 members of permanent staff once fully operational.

A campaign opposing the plans has been running alongside the application, with local residents fearing the impact that it will have on the local community.

Because of its energy-generating capacity – in excess of 10MWe - the Buttington ERF application is considered a Development of National Significance, which are determined by Welsh Ministers.

Now the application has been made, the Planning Inspectorate has six weeks to decide whether or not to accept it. If it accepts the application, it will produce a report setting out its conclusions and recommendations around whether to grant permission. The final decision lies then with the relevant Welsh Minister as to whether the project can proceed. 

The decision-making process could take up to 36 weeks, during which time the local community will be invited to liaise with the Inspectorate with questions and comments about the planned facility.

Alistair Hilditch-Brown, Chief Executive of Broad Energy, said submitting the application was a significant step forwards.

“It’s an exciting milestone moment for us,” he said. “We’ve been examining the feasibility of this project for a number of years and it’s taken a lot of hard work to get it to this point. It’s perfect timing in a way, given the Government's focus on net zero targets and a green recovery for the whole of the UK.

“The Buttington Energy Recovery Facility will provide an innovative way to significantly reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill while generating low-carbon energy at the same time. It will be a significant step in the right direction towards helping Wales to become a zero-waste nation by 2050, will provide a much-needed facility for businesses in Powys and the surrounding area and will contribute a significant amount of green energy for consumption.

“Thanks to the public consultation we held, we’re aware that the local community has questioned the project and we’ve listened to people’s voices. Many concerns have been based on outdated misconceptions that conjure up the smoking chimney stacks of the 1980s, rather than the technology that is available today. Modern-day Energy Recovery Facilities are a great way to create sustainable energy while removing non-recyclable waste from landfill.

“We remain committed to being open and transparent throughout the remainder of the planning process and will continue to address any questions that are raised with us.”

The proposed ERF will use state-of-the-art technology, provided by Hitachi Zosen Inova, which has a significant track record in building such facilities. It will be capable of processing non-hazardous, non-recyclable waste and transforming it into 12.8-megawatts of low-carbon electricity annually, which will be exported to the National Grid. 

The full application will be available to the public on the Planning Inspectorate website if and when the application is accepted. People will also be able to view the documents on the Broad Energy (Wales) website at from March 1.


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