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Community council objects to energy facility

Created on 12/05/2021 @ 13:35


By Elgan Hearn, Local Democracy Reporter

Trewern Community Council will object to plans to build an incinerator on the outskirts of Buttington.

Following a public meeting last night which attracted more than 40 residents and allowed them to have their say on the proposals, the council held an extraordinary meeting to discuss the proposals.

In April, Broad Energy Wales submitted the planning application for a “Energy Recovery Facility” which could produce enough electricity to power 20,000 homes. They also said it will create jobs.

The application is seen as a Development of National Significance (DNS) which means it will be dealt with by government planning inspectors rather than Powys County Council planners.

The 12.8 mega-watt incinerator development includes other infrastructure buildings including a 70-metre-high chimney stack and changes to the roads.

A consultation process allows Trewern Community Council to submit their views on the proposal.

Cllr Robin Breakwell said: “I’ve summarised what I’ve heard tonight, there’s 18 pretty compelling arguments against, I don’t think there’s anyone in favour of it.”

Cllr Stephen Novick, said: “It’s important to say we’ve had a meeting, the only other thing is the safety of the site, is this potentially a massive disaster waiting to happen?”

He pointed out that there had been a blaze at a former recycling plant near Telford at the start of the month.

Cllr Sasha Hart said that the council should consider the opinion from Buttington-Trewern primary school parents whose feedback is “paramount”.

“It’s been difficult that we’ve not been able to protest or get involved, this timescale is so short, we have to encourage people to make their voices heard.”

Cllr Peter Davies said that he was worried that the incinerator would “put the mockers” on a housing development near the school.

Cllr Fiona Warburton, who chaired the meeting said: “The consensus is definitely that we are opposing, and we have a number of sub-headings under which we will write our response.

“I’d like to thank everyone for their time and effort, this is such an important issue for all of us, it’s great to see how many people cared enough to give up their time this evening.”

Cllr Warburton said she would work with the council’s clerk, Angela Evans, to go through the responses and put together a written argument against the application.

She hoped to be able to circulate this to other councillors by Friday for feedback from councillors before a final version is sent to the Welsh Government planning inspectors before the May 24 deadline.

The main points of their objection are:

  • Health issues.
  • Air quality due to unusual weather patterns in the valley.
  • Increased road pollution.
  • Proximity to school.
  • Strain on road network with narrow bridges in both directions.
  • Negative impact on recycling.
  • Is there a need for the facility?
  • Visual impact on the area.
  • Damage tourism.
  • Pressure on local community during building phase with the influx of workers.

Broad Energy have explained that the facility would take up to three years to build, create 300 construction jobs and provide work for 30 permanent jobs once operational.

They add that the facility’s lifespan will be 25 to 30 years and that it would be operational all day, every day.

Broad Energy said: “The vision of the development is to provide a sustainable use for a former quarry area by delivering a bespoke facility to waste management and the generation of low carbon energy.

“The long-term objective is for the development to act as a catalyst for the wider aspiration for the development sire to create an eco-business park.

“The Welsh Government has set the target to become a zero-waste nation by 2050.

“The ERF represents a major step in helping Wales achieve this ambition.”


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