Wednesday, 31 May 2017

DCC wants to know if AI’s seasonal working scheme has ever been tried before

The Devon Minerals Plan states that "any proposal [for Straitgate Farm] should include provision for alternative supply in the event of derogation of private water supplies resulting from mineral development"; indeed, it was a fact recognised in Amec’s water report.

However, as we mentioned in Amec’s water report has been whitewashed, and despite Aggregate Industries addressing this in the last application, the company has now fallen silent on the matter.

Full detail should be provided including proposals for either a bond or legal agreement dealing with this matter. 2.8
They have also asked that:
information should be provided on the provision of alternative water supplies to mitigate any unforeseen adverse effects of the quarrying operation on the hydrology of the downstream County Wildlife Sites at Cadhay Wood and Cadhay Bog. 2.8
It will be interesting to see what AI comes up with for that one; Cadhay Bog is shown in the photo below.

But DCC has raised another matter connected to this subject. It wants to know whether AI’s seasonal working scheme - the one that puts the drinking water supplies of 100 people at risk - has actually been tried before; whether, in fact, it should be considered “novel”:
The applicant is requested to provide information on other sites either in their control or operated by another company where the proposed working technique is used successfully. Reason: The MPA will wish to consider whether the proposed working technique is a “novel approach” as set out in the NPPF Paragraph: 048 Reference ID: 27-048-20140306 in respect of the requirements for guarantees on the amelioration of impacts on local water supplies should there be any technical failure. 8.5
For those reliant on the site for their private water, this is what Paragraph 48 says:
When is a financial guarantee justified?
A financial guarantee to cover restoration and aftercare costs will normally only be justified in exceptional cases. Such cases, include:
where a novel approach or technique is to be used, but the minerals planning authority considers it is justifiable to give permission for the development...