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DfI has planning approval for new sewage treatment works

22 February 2018

​The Minister for Infrastructure is delighted that planning approval has been given for the new sewage treatment works.

However, he is disappointed that over £4m will be spent on covering the primary settlement tanks (PSTs) before it can be evidenced that this will actually address possible odour issues.

Continuous improvement is one of Department for Infrastructure's (DfI) main objectives. A new sewage treatment plant is greatly needed as the current plant is well past its design life and is causing maintenance issues.

The new plant design submitted for the planning application would not only be capable of improved performance but also a predicted 18% reduction in odour to that currently experienced, making DfI a better neighbour.

Over the last few years, Bellozanne has undergone a transformation, improving the conditions for the neighbourhood:

  • the old Energy from Waste plant has been demolished
  • a newer more efficient sludge digestion plant with better odour control has been built
  • the recycling centre and green waste reception have moved to La Collette
  • later this year the new clinical waste incinerator at La Collette will be operational and the old one at Bellozanne can be demolished
  • the waste metals recycling facility (scrap metal yard) will also be moving to La Collette later this year

In addition, the Minister is trying to establish a pedestrian and cycle link between Bellozanne Valley and Fern Valley, subject to agreement with landowners and obtaining planning permission.

Last July, the Planning Committee deferred making a decision on the planning application for the new sewage treatment works following concerns expressed about odours by people living in the neighbourhood.

This deferment was to give the DfI the opportunity to consider covering the PSTs.

Following the planning application deferment, DfI reviewed its position and consulted with experts.

Until the plant is built, the difference covering the tanks would make on odours experienced by neighbours, could not be established reliably.

It was still not clear from where any odours experienced at Bellozanne emanate.

DfI concluded that it could not recommend expenditure of £4.12m for installing the covers plus the additional costs of ongoing maintenance, without being sure that the covers would make a difference

DfI, however, proposed a pragmatic approach and said that it would conduct odour monitoring and if it was found that unacceptable levels of odour were emanating from the new PSTs when they were built, then they would then cover the tanks.

The Planning Committee did not accept this approach and rejected the application.

DfI then decided to appeal believing their approach to be the best option for the Island.

This appeal has been allowed but with the condition that DfI submits plans and details for covering the PSTs for approval by the Department of the Environment prior to construction.

Minister for Infrastructure, Deputy Eddie Noel said “I am delighted that we have now got planning approval and can get going on the project. I accept that we have to abide by the accompanying condition and cover the primary settlement tanks during construction, however this does mean we may be spending over £4m when it might not actually be needed.”

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