PY­LONS RE­THINK URGED

Bat­tle re­joined against over­head lines from Wylfa Newydd with ‘unan­i­mous op­po­si­tion’ from is­land’s rep­re­sen­ta­tives

Bangor Mail - - FRONT PAGE - Eryl Crump

AN­GLE­SEY Coun­cil is urg­ing the Na­tional Grid to re­think its plan to build a sec­ond line of py­lons across the is­land.

The pro­posal for a sec­ond con­nec­tion for the pro­posed new Wylfa Newydd nu­clear power sta­tion has been for­mally ac­cepted by the Plan­ning In­spec­torate.

A 400kV elec­tric­ity trans­mis­sion would link the new nu­clear plant and ma­rine en­ergy de­vel­op­ments in the Ir­ish Sea.

But the coun­cil is dis­ap­pointed the North Wales Con­nec­tion plans are for “over ground­ing”, rather than un­der­ground cables.

Anti-nu­clear cam­paign­ers said they were not sur­prised by the ap­pli­ca­tion

An­gle­sey Coun­cil leader Lli­nos Medi, who backs un­der­gound cables, said: “We as an author­ity are dis­ap­pointed the over­head con­nec- tion project has been sub­mit­ted.

“As the host com­mu­nity and lo­cal author­ity, our pri­or­ity is to en­sure the best pos­si­ble out­comes for the peo­ple and com­mu­ni­ties of An­gle­sey and we are very con­cerned lo­cal views have not been con­sid­ered fol­low­ing the en­gage­ment and con­sul­ta­tion process.

“There is a clear con­sen­sus amongst the is­land’s elected rep­re­sen­ta­tives - we are unan­i­mous in our op­po­si­tion to a sec­ond line of elec­tric­ity py­lons across An­gle­sey, and we want any new power lines to be un­der­grounded.”

An­gle­sey Coun­cil’s head of reg­u­la­tion and eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, Dy­lan Wil­liams said the Grid’s plans were not “the right solution for the is­land”.

“Our role as a key con­sul­tee will be taken se­ri­ously to en­sure that Na­tional Grid have to de­liver a project that works for the Is­land, its com­mu­ni­ties, res­i­dents and the Me­nai area of Gwynedd,” he added.

Out­lin­ing the Na­tional Grid’s pro­pos­als, Gareth Wil­liams, Na­tional Grid Se­nior Project Man­ager, said: “The con­nec­tion will trans­port low car­bon power to homes and busi­nesses across Wales and the rest of the UK.

“Our ap­pli­ca­tion is an im­por­tant step in un­lock­ing many mil­lions of pounds of lo­cal in­vest­ment and around 9,000 con­struc­tion jobs that the power sta­tion will cre­ate.

“We’ve lis­tened to what peo­ple have told us and made hun­dreds of changes – big and small – as we’ve de­vel­oped our plans,” he added.

He said changes to the project as a re­sult of feed­back in­clude se­lect­ing a route cor­ri­dor in the cen­tre of An­gle­sey and route­ing close to the ex­ist­ing line.

Mr Wil­liams con­tin­ued: “We be­lieve our pro­pos­als of­fer the best bal­ance of ev­ery­thing we must con­sider and mean there are no long-term ef­fects for most ar­eas of An­gle­sey and north Gwynedd.”

Dy­lan Mor­gan of PAWB (Peo­ple against Wylfa B) said op­po­si­tion to the pro­posed py­lons would con­tinue.

“Changes may have been made to the orig­i­nal pro­pos­als but they will still blight the land­scape of the is­land,” he said.

The Plan­ning In­spec­torate now has 28 days to de­cide whether to ac­cept Na­tional Grid’s ap­pli­ca­tion for ex­am­i­na­tion. If this hap­pens, pub­lic hear­ings will be held in the lo­cal area.

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