Wednesday, 29 July 2015

DCC asks AI for additional information - quite a lot of additional information...

Following a review of consultation responses, DCC, as the Mineral Planning Authority, has issued Aggregate Industries with a request for additional information and clarification in respect of the Straitgate application; a request in respect of the Blackhill application will follow in due course.

It’s a long list, and it will be interesting to see how AI responds to a number of points, particularly:

On highways 2
Cross sections across the site to confirm that the full depth of the excavations would not be lower than the A30... Reason: To safeguard the stability of the Strategic Road network
On the water environment - levels of working 13
The applicant should demonstrate the methodology which will be used on site to ensure no working within the 1m standoff for the highest measured point of the groundwater in the Budleigh Salterton Pebblebeds - given the acknowledged variations across the site and the concern that there has been no piezometer installed at the centre of the site to monitor ground water levels at that location.
On surface water management 17
The surface water management is inextricably connected to Flood Risk Management/Airport safeguarding and the need to maintain and recharge watercourses. This issue is so important in terms of the likely significant impacts of the proposal the MPA would wish to ensure that a SWM scheme can be designed to meet all of the requirements identified in advance of the determination of this application.
On airport safeguarding 45
Need for clarification – there seems to be a significant potential conflict between the restoration proposals as set out in the wildlife sections of the report and the CAA safeguarding advice. This needs to be resolved before the MPA will be able to assess the likely mitigation measures and restoration proposals.
On alternatives 55
The MPA would also request that the applicant explain in detail the reason for their change of mind about the availability of Rockbeare Quarry for processing given the content of the letter from AI to DCC dated 14 May 2014 (AI Ref: CT/7812/DMP) – “Location for Processing” which states clearly that Beggars Roost has capacity for the silt produced and that Areas D and K would be used for stockpiling and Pond J for water.
On alternatives - reducing transport 56
The applicant should submit a statement explaining how the proposed development and the proposed location of the processing would contribute to the requirements of NPPF... Plans and decisions should ensure developments that generate significant movement are located where the need to travel will be minimised and the use of sustainable transport modes can be maximised...
On need 57
...the document should set out in policy terms the “exceptional circumstances” the applicant considers that exist [for Blackhill Quarry] to provide for the proposed processing solution for Straitgate Quarry.
On demonstration of resource 59
The applicant is requested to provide a simple, but evidenced assessment of the resource available at that location. The assessment should provide the MPA with the calculations of mineral asset when leaving 1m above the water table set against that of working to the level of the water table and also with and without the estimated asset from the working of the overburden. Reason: To ensure confidence that the figures given in the application documentation as a saleable resource are as correct and clear as possible given that they are being used to justify the environmental consequences of the proposal.