Buttington Quarry - ERF

Received 11 May 2021
From Ruth Jones


I am writing to express my considerable objections regarding the proposal to develop a biomass incinerator at Buttington Quarry, Welshpool, by Broad Energy

My family and I purchased a property less than a mile from the quarry, and was attracted primarily due to to its proximity to Shrewsbury as well as the wonderful views, rural setting and community involved way of life we as a young family could achieve here. However, the proposal by Broad energy to develop the quarry into a Biomass incinerator, has completely, turned our dreams of our forever house, at the gateway to Wales in the Powys hills, into a possible death trap for us and our young children – this might sound rather dramatic, but in reality, when you read about the health risks associated with Biomass facilities, such as outlined in “the Health Effects of Waste Incinerators – 4th report for the British Society for Ecological Medicine” our lives are at risk! It is proven that living close to a biomass facility increases the risk of adult and childhood cancer, increases mortality rates as well as increasing the risk of birth defects in newborns. The fact that a primary school is located less than a mile from the proposed site, and the significant health risks that it brings to all children, is a risk [***REDACT***]

Added to the very considerable health risks, upon which I have only just glossed over, the infrastructure required to support the Biomass development would lead to significant additional traffic to an already very busy and accident prone stretch of road. The road runs right outside the local primary school, which is again less than a mile away from the proposed site. Added to this, there are numerous tourism based businesses in this area, including caravan parks etc, and the increase in traffic pollution, visual pollution as well as health risks are all likely to have a significant detrimental impact on them. I do not see that the development of a Biomass Incinerator will bring any significant benefit to the local area or community, as there is certainly very little long term employment opportunities for the employment demographic local to this area of Powys.

I am concerned that as a country, Wales is one of the top recycling countries in the world, therefore is there really a need for incineration, particularly as, as a county, Powys residents produce under 20.000 tonnes of non-recyclable waste, which is not enough to feed this incinerator? Consequently, waste will have to be shipped in, via road, from other areas of Wales, but more than likely from England. How does burning this waste, fit with the Welsh governments policy of aiming to achieve zero CO2 emissions, surely this is not a direction we should be heading!. Burning waste, rather than increasing recycling and reducing single use plastic usage, is certainly not a sustainable answer, particularly if the drive to recycle continues, where will waste have to come from? Can a further Biomass incinerator be sustainable, when we already have an existing Biomass facility in Shrewsbury (approx 20 miles away - located on an industrial complex) and a smaller facility in Welshpool. Added to this, incineration does not remove waste it simply turns it into another arguably more hazardous form and in fact the ash produced amounts to 30-50% by volume of the original waste. Is this really the best way to get rid of our rubbish??

The Buttington Quarry, is situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty, and even one area in the quarry is designated as an SSI. The development of such a large Biomass facility is just going to add further visual pollution to an area that is renown for its rural outlook and quiet way of life. Contamination from the facility, even down to the very small particle contamination, will inevitably get into the food chain through ground contamination/air pollution and in the long term this will have a detrimental effect on the productivity of the surrounding land and its livestock and as a consequence on the livelihood of our farming community, upon which Powys is renown.

Our property borders the quarry, so as a family we are very concerned that during both the construction phase and once it is operational, we will be subject to additional noise and light pollution as well as the associated smells associated with non recyclable rubbish. The damage to our local ecosystem and biodiversity that we currently experience is also a significant worry. [***REDACT***]the local primary school, will be within a mile of the incinerator constantly, and as such, this has caused significant worry and stress [***REDACT***]

I am really disappointed that this proposal is actually progressing baring in mind the Welsh governments moratorium on new incinerator projects. Also, despite raising a number of questions to Broad Energy during the consultation period, firstly during the zoom consultation meetings, which were ignored, and then separately via email, we have still not received any responses to our queries and questions. This is extremely disappointing, particularly as we are direct neighbours to the proposed development site.

To conclude, we are 100% against this proposal, and do not see any benefits, and therefore wish to express our objections as outlined above.