Stop The Construction Of A Biomass And Anaerobic Digestion Facility In Huntington
This is a petition against planning application SS.13/03/613 W | Construction of a renewable energy facility compromising of a biomass and anaerobic digestion facility together with associated plants and buildings, hardstanding, access routes and landscaping | Cocksparrow Lane Huntington Cannock South Staffordshire WS12 4PB.
An existing 1.5 hectare composting plant in Cocksparrow Lane, Huntington has applied to build a Biomass and Anaerobic digestion facility on its existing site. The new site will be larger than what is there at present and will produce a biogas, consisting of methane, carbon dioxide and traces of other gases.
I agree that renewable energy plants need to be created as we cannot rely on the use of Fossil Fuels to power our country as we go forward into the 21st Century. However i believe the site chosen in Cocksparrow Lane, Huntington is the wrong location for the following reasons.....
1. Since planning permission was granted in 2004 for the existing compost facility to be built the Huntington Schools have been relocated to the centre of the village -at the beginning of Cockspparrow Lane. This will only be approx 1/2 mile from the new facility.
2. HGV traffic through Huntington will increase as vehicles above 7.5 tonnes will not be able to travel further down Cocksparrow lane to New Penkridge Road due to a weight limit on the road. As a result ALL vehicles over 7.5 Tonnes will be travelling directly past Huntington schools, to and from the new facility putting children at increased risk. According to the planning application a maximum of 18 return trips (36 journeys passed the school) from HGV's will be allowed to enter the plant in one day. I would like the planning committee to re address and reduce the amount of HGV's allowed to the site.
3. The new facility will be built on Green belt land. According to the people i have spoke to from the Green belt the new waste plant should not be allowed to be built on Green Belt land. They stated that it is possible to change the use of land in green belt, but that this is very rare and local authority's should only do this if no suitable site for the building can be found in the surrounding urban area. I believe there are plenty of urban areas around the South Staffordshire area that could be used to build the new waste facility on.
4. There will be greater potential for vermin to be attracted to the site, due to the nature of the imported material. Local businesses such as the barns pub and residents using the pit mound for leisure walking may be affected as a result.
5. Westerly winds will mean that offensive smells expelled from the plant will have to be endured by residents of Huntington, and School Children on occasions. This may also affect local businesses such as the near by Barns Pub, and The Littleton Arms.
6. The entrance and exit of the new waste plant will be located on a sharp blind bend. Vehicles approaching Huntington from the Penkridge area will not have sufficient time to react. HGVs vehicles have slow acceleration especially when fully laden so the large amount of time it will take for them to get clear of the junction will put motorists in danger. A review of the speed limit to a 30mph zone will need to be considered. I work for the ambulance service and i have seen road traffic collisions time and time again in places such as this.
7. The visual impact on people approaching the Cannock Chase AONB and Huntington from the A5 will have a negative influence on the local area.
8. The traffic island outside of Huntington School is already a heavily congested area. The added HGV traffic will further congest the area meaning more traffic and air pollution.
9. According to the National Waste Strategy Policy (2007) "Communities should take more responsibility for their own waste". If that is the case then why is it suggested that a joint waste core strategy may be discussed so that South Staffordshire will have to accommodate some of Stoke On Trents waste?. They only have one small biological treatment plant at present and they need to find an extra 81000 tonnes of capacity by 2025. Some of their waste may end up eventually at our end of the county. (Information from planning committee meeting - 06/08/2009
10. Cannocks anaerobic digester at their Biffa site is not working to capacity. Therfore does South Staffordshire need another waste plant to recycle OUR OWN waste?. I believe we are doing enough already. We do not want to be the dumping ground for the Midlands. If communities should take more responsibility for their own waste then surly we are doing our bit already.
As I said above I realise that renewable energy plants need to be built BUT they need to be built in the right place and this most certaintly is NOT the right place. If you agree please sign the petition and share.
The petition has been signed by 367 local residents of which 15 wanted to remain anonymous.
It was started by Scott Allport - A resident on the dogintree estate - Huntington on behalf of the residents of Huntington. And submitted to Julie Castree-Denton - Team leader - Waste Planning Policy and Development Control at Staffordshire County Council.