Application for biomass units criticised

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An application for the installation of biomass units at a Clipsham farm, came in for fierce criticism by members of South Kesteven District Council’s development control committee.

The application sought consent for two biomass units at Quarry Farm in Holywell Road, which operate by burning dried woodchips that are chipped on site, producing heat and electricity. Any excess of the latter, would be exported to the National Grid.

The plans had previously come before committee and were deferred, in order for an independent consultant to look into whether the output of electricity made the proposal a commercial venture, rather than a household scheme to heat buildings, and for the drying of grain, oats and woodchip.

Coun Michael King (Con) described the project as “a wolf in sheep’s clothing”, and said: “It is in my view a power station. It needs to be honest about what it is.”

The application was submitted after it came to the council’s attention in February 2014 that one of the biomass units had already been installed at the farm.

Chairman of the committee, Martin Wilkins (Con), said: “I am really disappointed with this application and the way it has come through to 
us.”

Fourteen members of the committee voted to refuse planning permission, with one abstention.