Ali­cante fights fuel plant

Plans pre­sented to build 18 huge de­posits to store 711,000 cu­bic me­tres

Costa Levante News - - NEWS -

By James Parkes ALI­CANTE city is unan­i­mously cry­ing out against plans to cre­ate a huge fuel stor­age plant in the har­bour.

The project to build up to 18 macro-de­posits ca­pa­ble of stor­ing up to 711,000 cu­bic me­tres of fuel has been pre­sented by the port au­thor­i­ties and is cur­rently in its pub­lic al­le­ga­tions process – which prom­ises to be a hefty task.

So far all po­lit­i­cal par­ties rep­re­sented on the city coun­cil (PP, PSOE, Guan­yar, C's, and Com­pro­mis) have ap­proved a joint ob­jec­tion against the plant in a full coun­cil meet­ing. Mayor Luis Bar­cala (PP) said he al­ready stated his op­po­si­tion to the scheme a month ago when it was first pre­sented.

Ali­cante res­i­dents' as­so­ci­a­tions are also set to present their com­plaints over what they re­gard as ‘a lethal weapon’ and ‘sea pol­lu­tion’ in the area.

The port au­thor­i­ties in­sist the project abides to cur­rent leg­is­la­tion, fol­lows the rule set in the city plan (PGOU) ap­proved in 1987 and the cur­rent ‘Plan Espe­cial del Puerto’ har- bour guide­lines. Hence, they as­sure, there are no le­gal grounds to scrap the plans.

In ad­di­tion, op­po­nents have ad­mit­ted it is a le­gal ac­i­tiv­ity and are aware that af­ter sign­ing an agree­ment in 1995 to move the CLH com­pany, nei­ther the city hall nor the port au­thor­i­ties have changed their plans to ban ac­tiv­i­ties re­lated to fuel pro­cess­ing.

Ob­jec­tions can be pre­sented un­til Novem­ber 12, but there is no time limit for how long it can take to con­sider these, and de­pend­ing on the num­ber – which is ex­pected to be very high – the process could drag on un­til af­ter the next lo­cal elec­tions in May.

Mean­while, the com­pany ex­pects to have the first two mega-tanks fin­ished next year and that all 18 will be built by 2022. A lorry driver who was five times over the al­co­hol limit was ar­rested on the A-30 mo­tor­way at the Puerto de la Cadena be­tween Carta­gena and Mur­cia. The driver was trans­port­ing freight for a lo­cal su­per­mar­ket on Thurs­day when he was stopped at a Guardia Civil check­point. A force spokesman said the man was tested be­cause he clearly seemed to be un­der the in­flu­ence of al­co­hol. He was ar­rested and taken to court in Mur­cia for a fast­track trial. His ve­hi­cle was im­mo­bilised un­til the trans­port com­pany sent an­other driver to col­lect it.

An aerial view of Ali­cante har­bour

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