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Tuesday, 11 February, 2003, 12:17 GMT
Gas depot plan secures backing
Waterston site, picture courtesy of Petroplus
An image of the Petroplus site after construction
Plans to develop a gas storage depot in west Wales which could create about 500 construction jobs have moved a step closer.

The proposals, which would create 30 permanent posts, are to build a facility for storing liquid natural gas near Milford Haven.

On Tuesday, Pembrokeshire County Council's planning committee gave the project the green light.

There would be 200 to 500 construction jobs created over a period of three years

Derek Lloyd, Petroplus

Final approval for the scheme is expected in June, but depends on Transco extending its pipeline as far as Milford Haven.

The gas tanks, which will store about 5% of the total gas demand for the UK, would be built by Dutch-owned firm Petroplus.

Building work, which would take three years to complete, could start in the autumn.

Petroplus wants to import and supply gas to south and west Wales and says the project would create between 200 and 500 construction jobs over a three-year period.

The company has run a storage facility, covering about 109 hectares of land, at Waterston since 1998.

The firm plans to use this area plus another 10 hectares of undeveloped land.

It wants to expand the UK gas distribution network, especially in west Wales.

The gas would be delivered to Milford Haven by tankers which would berth at one of the jetties.

Jobs

The gas, which would have been cooled to its liquid state, would be stored and then subjected to a re-gasification process so it can be exported from the site.

"There would be 200 to 500 construction jobs created over a period of three years," said Mr Lloyd.

"The jobs would be a mixture and as many local jobs as possible would be included in that," he added.

The company's plan - called Energy for Wales - has evolved after talks with the Welsh Development Agency, Pembrokeshire County Council and the Welsh Assembly Government.

The firm will now seek permits and talk to financial bodies.

A number of agencies and organisations have been consulted about the plan.

Few objections

Cadw, the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park and the Milford Haven Port Authority have no objections.

But Milford Haven Town Council has raised a concern about a footpath, and one local resident has said equipment at the refinery should be removed.

Pembrokeshire council officers said a re-routing of the coastal path will result in improved views of the Haven.

The council's recommendation also carries a number of conditions such as ensuring a planting scheme, carrying out an animal survey and choosing the colours of the tanks.


More from south west Wales
See also:

11 Feb 02 | Wales
10 Feb 03 | UK
24 Jan 03 | Wales
06 Feb 03 | England
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