WAG halts power station over marine life fears

8th August 2011

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Natural resources ,
  • Energy ,
  • Ecosystems



The Welsh Assembly government has halted moves to licence a new power station, after concerns were raised over the adequacy of the Environment Agency's environmental impact assessment (EIA).

The Welsh government intervened after the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) objected to the proposed licence for the operation of Pembroke Power Station, saying the gas station’s cooling system could harm wildlife in an internationally important marine conservation site.

The gas-fired power station, being developed by RWE npower, is being built alongside the Milford Haven estuary. It has a cooling system that will pump heated water into the Pembrokeshire Marine Special Area of Conservation.

In its response to the Environment Agency’s consultation, the CCW warned that raising the temperature of the estuary would alter the natural processes on which the marine life in the area depended, threatening its survival.

Roger Thomas, CCW chief executive, said: “The Pembrokeshire Marine Special Area of Conservation must be protected in line with the Welsh government's aspirations in terms of sustainability – not only to protect the important marine wildlife but also to safeguard the Haven for other interests, including local fisheries.”

The CCW’s worries echoed those of Friends of the Earth Cymru, which released a statement on 18 July calling on the Welsh Assembly to intervene in the power station plans.

“The Environment Agency's assessment of the power station's impact on the fragile Pembrokeshire coast is inadequate, incoherent and unlawful,” argued Peter Roderick, legal adviser to Friends of the Earth Cymru.

"It accepts that there will be more negative impacts on the Haven, but is trying to wriggle out of the legal consequences. If the agency grants this permit, it will be a stain on its reputation in Wales for many years to come.”

The Welsh Assembly government confirmed to the environmentalist that it had requested the consultation be halted until the Environment Agency could provide adequate answers to the questions raised by the CCW.

A spokesperson said: “The Welsh government has identified some matters on which it considers that clarification and further information should be provided by the Environment Agency and the CCW before the final decision on the permit application is taken.”


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.

Transform articles

Fifth of UK food firms unprepared for deforestation regulation

One in five UK food businesses are not prepared for EU Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) coming into force in December, a new survey has uncovered.

16th May 2024

Read more

Regulatory gaps between the EU and UK are beginning to appear, warns Neil Howe in this edition’s environmental legislation round-up

4th April 2024

Read more

Dr Julie Riggs issues a call to arms to tackle a modern-day human tragedy

15th March 2024

Read more

The UK’s new biodiversity net gain (BNG) requirements could create 15,000 hectares of woodlands, heath, grasslands, and wetlands and absorb 650,000 tonnes of carbon each year.

13th March 2024

Read more

Campaign group Wild Justice has accused the UK government of trying to relax pollution rules for housebuilders “through the backdoor”.

14th February 2024

Read more

Digital tracking, packaging data delays and new collections provide a waste focus for this edition’s environmental round-up by legislation expert Neil Howe

28th November 2023

Read more

Environmental crimes could result in prison sentences of up to 10 years and company fines of 5% of turnover under a proposed EU law agreed by the European parliament and council.

21st November 2023

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close