Open-pit coal mining in the United Kingdom

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The United Kingdom produces about ten million tons of coal a year [1] from open-pit mines. The majority comes from Scotland,[2] with the largest operator there being the Scottish Coal subsidiary of Scottish Resources Group;[3] they are rather unforthcoming about the locations of their mines.

Statistics on open-pit coal mining are compiled by the British Geological Survey from information provided by local planning authorities, and available at "Opencast coal statistics". .

Any given site does not last very long - four or five years at extraction rates of up to a quarter-million tons a year. Open-pit sites active in 2010 include:[4]

Wales[edit]

Miller Argent in Merthyr Tydfil[edit]

Miller Argent run the Ffos-y-fran Land Reclamation Scheme in eastern Merthyr Tydfil, which involves mining the coal from under 367 hectares of land made derelict by earlier coal-mining operations; the coal will be provided to the Aberthaw Power Station on the Glamorgan coast. The project started in 2007 and is expected to last 17.5 years.

Tower Colliery site in Hirwaun[edit]

The deep mine at Tower Colliery closed in 2008, but there is a plan to build an 80-hectare 165-metre open-pit mine to extract a remaining 6Mton reserve of anthracite, for which a planning application was registered in July 2010.[5]

Nant-y-Mynydd[edit]

Energybuild Ltd operates an opencast site here;[6] it was estimated to have 450kton of recoverable coal in 2006, which has mostly been excavated between 2006 and 2009. The overburden was sold as road stone.

THE PLANNING SITUATION ON NEW WELSH OPENCAST SITES:DEVLOPMENTS IN 2013(This is an extract (except for the entry on Selar 2nd Site Extension) from '2013 Review of Surface Coal Mine Application Sites in England, Scotland and Wales' The Loose Anti Opencast Network (LAON) see reference at the end)

NEW SITE GRANTED PLANNING PERMISSION IN WALES IN 2013

SELAR 2nd SITE EXTENSION (Neath and Port Talbot Council)(800,000 tonnes)

Ref ‘Selar Central: Frequently Asked Questions’ (Celtic Energy, undated) @ http://www.coal.com/community-consultation/selar-central/


Ref ‘Jobs safeguarded at Neath Valley Mine’ (South Wales Evening Post, 3/12/13) @

http://www.southwales-eveningpost.co.uk/Jobs-secured-Neath-Valley/story-20253596-detail/story.html


News that approval has been given for this extension by Neath and Port Talbot Council. This site originally gained approval in 1995, but vigorous direct action opposition supported by some local people, delayed the site becoming operational until 1997. The original timetable should have seen the site being restored by 2012, but two extensions will now keep it going to 2020.

SITE REFUSED PLANNING PERMISSION IN WALES IN 2013

VARTEG (Torfaen Council), (Public Inquiry), (Glamorgan Power) (325,000 tonnes)

Ref 'Varteg opencast mine appeal rejected' BBC (News South East Wales, 25/11/13) @

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-east-wales-25080387

PROSPECTIVE NEW WELSH OPENCAST SITES IN 2013

THE BRITISH IN TALYWAIN, (Torfaen Council Ref 08/P/0028(W)) (HSBC) (350,000 tonnes) (71hectares) This is a large derelict brown field site which was once the site of an ironworks and a colliery which closed in 1974. The site had lain derelict for c 30 years before Spring (Talywain) Limited bought the site in 2007. The current planning application was prepared for them and submitted in 2008. However, the company went into administration and ownership was transferred to HSBC. Torfaen Council initiated a new round of discussions in 2012 to remediate the site, but local people rejected any proposal that would include surface mining the site. See

Ref ‘British Redevelopment Proposals’ (Torfaen Talks, Torfaen Council, August 2012) @ http://www.torfaen.gov.uk/lgsl/en/Torfaen-Talks/August-2012/British-redevelopment-proposals.aspx

Ref‘Residents say no to British mine plan at Talywain’ (Sth Wales Argus, 10/10/12) @ http://www.southwalesargus.co.uk/news/9977283.Residents_say_no_to_British_mine_plan_at_Talywain/

Case papers for the 2008 Application are available for viewing as the application has never been determined. See http://www.planapps.torfaen.gov.uk/thebritish/

BRYN DEFAID, LLWYDCOED (Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, Reference No 13/0421/10)) (Application) (Celtic Energy) (1.2m tonnes) (104 hectares) Case papers for this application are available for viewing as the application has yet to be determined. See

http://planning.rctcbc.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=externalDocuments&keyVal=_RHOND_DCAPR_43419

A local group the LLWYDCOED ACTION GROUP is opposing this application. You can contact them via their web site @ http://llwydcoedactiongroup.weebly.com/

The LLwyncoed Action Group are a member of LAON

EAST PIT, BRYNAMAN (Neath Port Talbot County Council) (Oak Regeneration) (application ) (1.63m tonnes ) (800 hectares of which 80 are currently operational) (Ref no P2012/1073

This is an old industrial site with a history going back over 200 years. The Scoping Report which preceded the current application indicated that as far as surface mining was concerned : “ Surface mining operations commenced in the area in 1948 with the small Penstack, Gwaun Cae Gurwen and later, Rhyd-wen sites. All had been completed by 1955 with less than 60,000 tonnes in total having been worked. No further workings took place until the Pengosto Site was worked between 1967 and 1979. The East Pit working commenced in 1981 as a replacement for the Pengosto site, and has continued in the form of East Pit Extension which granted permission in 1986, and the East Pit East Revised Extension, permitted in 2004.”

This means that out of 65 years since 1948, opencast mining has occurred on this site for 52 of those years, 80% of the time.

More detail about the proposal can be accessed via the Neath Port Talbot County Council web pages for the case papers here: https://planning.npt.gov.uk/detail.asp?AltRef=P2012/1073&ApplicationNumber=&AddressPrefix=EAST+Pit&submit1=Go

An outline of the proposed extraction of minerals is contained in Appendix 1 here: http://planning.npt.gov.uk:8251/start.aspx?Case=P2012/1073

It also seems that Celtic Energy are in breach of their [planning conditions by continuing to extract coal from this site without a valid licence, see Ref ‘East Pit coal work could be extended’ Carmarthen Journal, 9/10/13 @ http://www.thisissouthwales.co.uk/East-Pit-coal-work-extended/story-19906918-detail/story.html#axzz2ng7KZ0SD

NANT LLESG, (Caerphilly County Borough Council ) (Planning Application) (Miller Argent) (6.0m tonnes) (478 hectares) More detail about the proposal can be accessed via the Caerphilly County borough web pages for the case papers here: http://www.caerffili.gov.uk/site.aspx?s=oMR4sZmcAxuMDgSoLTWXTpyhyMCPoWtmJjRyZ7MiRfwZ7KBAYYp+ag==

A local group, the Green Valleys Alliance has already been formed to oppose any application. You can keep up with the campaign via their web site: www.greenvalleyalliance.co.uk

The Green Valleys Alliance now has a Facebook page @ https://www.facebook.com/GreenValleysAlliance The Green Valleys alliance is a member of LAON

Ref (except for Selar 2nd Site Extension) '2013 Review of Surface Coal Mine Application Sites in England, Scotland and Wales' Steve Leary, The Loose Anti Opencast Network, January 2013 @ http://coalaction.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/S1-PROSPECTIVE-OPENCAST-SITES.pdf

UK COAL (England and Scotland)[edit]

UK COAL active sites in 2010[edit]

  • Long Moor: 725kton initial reserve
  • Lodge House (Derbyshire): 1Mton initial reserve; further 800kton awaiting planning approval August 2011 [7]
  • Cutacre (Greater Manchester, between Bolton and Salford): 900kton initial reserve[8]
  • Steadsburn (fifteen miles north of Newcastle upon Tyne): 1Mton initial reserve plus 300ktons of fireclay
  • Stobswood, at Stobswood near Morpeth in Northumberland.[1][2]

UK COAL prospective sites in 2010 [9][edit]

  • Hoodsclose, Co. Durham (2200 kton coal + 500kton fireclay) [10]
  • Potland Burn, Northumberland (2,000 kton)
  • Park Wall North, Co. Durham (1275 kton)
  • Bradley, Co. Durham (550 kton) - rejected in February 2011 [11] though UK Coal is appealing [7]
  • Huntington Lane, Shropshire (900kton)
  • Blair House, Fife (700kton)
  • Former Minorca Colliery (Measham, Leicestershire); 1250 kton + 250 kton fireclay - planning permission granted July 2011, production expected to commence summer 2012 [7]
  • Butterwell Disposal Point (Northumberland); 1000 kton + 200kton fireclay

DEVELOPMENTS IN PLANNING APPLICATIONS FOR NEW OPENCAST SITES IN ENGLAND IN 2013 (All this information,New Site Approved, 'Call In Request' and 'Prospective English Opencast Sites' are extracts from '2013 Review of Prospective Surface Mines in England Scotland and Wales', The Loose Anti Opencast Network (LAON), January 2013. The full reference is cited at the end.

ENGLISH OPENCAST SITES GRANTED PLANNING PERMISSION IN 2013

FERNEYBEDS, WIDDRINGTON STATION (8 miles NW of Ashington) (Northumberland County Council : Ref No 12/03138/CCMEIA) (Application) (Banks Group) (750,000) (95.6 hectares)

This application was approved at Northumberland County Council’s Environment and Planning Committee meeting on 2/4/13. This is a link to the Officer’s Report recommending approval: http://committees.northumberland.gov.uk/aksnorthumberland/images/att14945.pdf

This is a link to the Minutes of the 2/4/13 Environment and Planning meeting;

http://committees.northumberland.gov.uk/aksnorthumberland/users/public/admin/kab12.pl?operation=SUBMIT&meet=64&cmte=PAE&grpid=public&arc=1

A REQUEST THAT AN APPLICATION BE 'CALLED IN' AND DECIDED BY A PUBLIC INQUIRY IN 2013

SHORTWOOD FARM (Trowell, nr Nottingham, Nottinghamshire) (Entered the Public Domain : October 2010(Application Approved) (UK Coal) (1,275,000) ) (130 hectares)

This application was approved by Nottinghamshire county Council’s Licensing and Planning committee at its meeting on 10/12/13. The local MP announced that she was to ask for the application to be called in on 12/12/13. For more information on the current situation with regard to this site see Anna Soubry’s Webpage on the Shortwood Farm Application @ http://www.annasoubry.org.uk/no-trowell-open-cast

PROSPECTIVE NEW ENGLISH OPENCAST MINES IN 2013

BIRKLANDS, (nr .Marley Hill, Gateshead), Gateshead : Reference No DC/11/00687/MIN (Entered Public Domain: June 2011) (Application) (Hall Construction Services) (275,000 tonnes ) (34.8 hectares)

Not a news story, but an on line petition that can be signed to show opposition to open casting at this proposed 275,000 tonne site. See http://www.savebirklands.org.uk/

You can read the Case Papers and still make comments here: http://public.gateshead.gov.uk/online-applications/simpleSearchResults.do?action=firstPage

BRADLEY (nr. Consett) (Co Durham) (Entered Public Domain: June 2007) (Planning Inspectorate: 2nd Public Inquiry Appeal Ref: APP/X1355/A/11/2150277) (UK Coal) (500,000) (68 hectares)

Here is a link to Planning Inspectorates Case Papers for this Appeal:

http://www.pcs.planningportal.gov.uk/pcsportal/ViewCase.asp

This application is waiting for The Planning Inspectorate to publish details about holding the 2nd Public Inquiry on this application. UK Coal website (13/7/13) states: “Bradley – Awaiting next steps Our application for planning consent was recommended for approval by the Planning Officer at Durham County Council. It was however turned down by the Council’s Planning Committee. After a Public Inquiry the application was refused and we appealed to the High Court. On Friday, 19 July 2013, Judge Nicholas Cooke quashed the inspector's decision on the grounds that he had misunderstood Government planning guidance.

We will now wait to see what steps are taken next.” @ http://s383052134.websitehome.co.uk/sites/bradley-%E2%80%93-awaiting-next-steps

There is a local campaign No Opencast Today or Tomorrow NOTT, which has campaigned against this proposal. This campaign uses The Pont Valley website to organise its campaign. See http://www.pontvalley.net/cms/index.php?module=pagemaster&PAGE_user_op=view_page&PAGE_id=6&MMN_position=5:5 The Pont Valley Network is a LAON member

BRENKLEY LANE ADDITIONAL (north of Dinnington and near Seaton Burn, Newcastle / Northumberland border) (Newcastle Council Planning Reference 2013/1323/01/DET), (Entered the Public Domain: June 2013) (Planning Application) (400,000 tonnes) (3 hectare addition) (Banks Mining)

A proposed extension to the existing Brenkley Lane site

You can read the Case Papers and still make comments here: http://publicaccess.newcastle.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=MTQMZQBS00900

DEANFIELD (West of New Sharlston, Wakefield Council Ref No 13/00006/MIN) (Entered the Public Domain: October 2012) (Planning Application) (UK Coal) 1.180,000 tonnes) (138 hectares) Last checked on 10/12/12

You can read the Case Papers and still make comments here: https://planning.wakefield.gov.uk/online-applications/simpleSearchResults.do;jsessionid=5B2B2142A988CC6354154B1747A29D00?action=firstPage There is a local group campaigning against this application : STOP OPENCAST AT SHARSTON. They are members of LAON

FIELD HOUSE, WEST RAINTON (c 4 miles NE of Durham) (Durham County Council / Sunderland City Council DCC Ref : CMA/4/107 ) ( Entered the Public Domain : February 2013 ) (Planning Application) (Hargreaves Services) (500,000) (52 hectares)

You can read the Case Papers and still make comments here: http://spatial.durham.gov.uk/dcs/DetailMain.asp?appid=2823&AppRef=&Category=%28%27CMA%27%29&Status=ND&Appeal=All&District=All&Month=All&Year=All

There is a local group campaigning against this application: STOP THE OPENCAST AT PITTINGTON AND WEST RAINTON: STOPWR, who are members of LAON.

They also have a Facebook page @ https://www.facebook.com/stopwr?ref=stream

GREAT OAK, AUDLEY, STAFFORDSHIRE (Staffordshire County Council : Reference No. SCO.55/2013 M ) (Entered the Public Domain : January 2013) (Scoping Inquiry) (UK Coal Surface Mining) (450,000) (84 Hectares)

Staffordshire County Council have now given their Scoping Opinion on this proposal on 13/2/13.This is a link to Case Papers for this proposal:

http://apps.staffordshire.gov.uk/CPLand/details.aspx?applicationID=132586

There is a local group campaigning against this proposal, the CAMPAIGN AGAINST GREAT OAK OPENCAST:CAGOO. To contact CAGOO go to either their Facebook page or their website http://www.facebook.com/pages/Campaign-against-Great-Oak-opencast/503477216363870 or email CAGOO ddobson1959@hotmail.com

Campaign Against Great Oak website: http://www.cagoo.org.uk/

CAGOO are members of LAON

HILLTOP PROJECT (NR. CLAY CROSS, DERBYSHIRE) (Derbyshire County Council) ( Entered the Public Domain : May 2012) ( Scoping Inquiry) (Provectus Remediation) (130,000) (30 hectares)

There is a local group campaigning against this proposal the HILLTOP ACTION GROUP. You can contact them either by the contact page on their web site at http://hilltopproject.com/ and then click on the contact page.

Currently, the Hilltop Action Group’s own website is one of the best sources of information about what stage this proposed application is at. Derbyshire County council issued its Scoping Opinion on 12/3/12 (see http://hilltopproject.com/information/scoping-opinion/ The Hilltop Action Group are members of LAON.

HOODS CLOSE WHITTONSTALL (Northumberland County Council Ref No C/10/00255/CCMEIA) (Entered the Public Domain: August 2009) (Application) (UK Coal) (2,200,000 (208 hectares)

You can still make a comment on this application. This is a link to the Case Papers: http://planning.northumberland.gov.uk/PublicAccess/tdc/DcApplication/application_detailview.aspx?caseno=LC4YU6LW00400

There is a local group campaigning against this application, the WHITTONSTALL ACTION GROUP: WAG. You can contact them here: info@whittonstallactiongroup.co.uk or visit their web site @ http://www.whittonstallactiongroup.co.uk/home.php

The Whittonstall Action group are members of LAON

MARLEY HILL COLLIERY RECLAMATION (Sunnyside, Gateshead Ref No DC/12/01349/MIN (Co Durham also affected), (Entered the Public Domain : May 2012) (Application) (UK Coal) (c1.0m) (118 hectares) (Case Officer for Gateshead: Ian Armstrong, Case Officer for Co Durham, Clare Teasdale.

You can still make a comment on this application. This is a link to this application’s Case Papers: http://public.gateshead.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=MF11JVHK09O00

MINORCA FIELD FARM EXTENSION (Between Measham and Swepstone) (Leicestershire County Council Ref No 2013/CM/0353/LCC) (Entered Planning Domain: December 2013) (Application) (250,000 tonnes) (1.9 hectares)

A proposed extension to the existing Minorca Surface Mine site You can still make a comment on this application. This is a link to this application’s Case Papers: http://planning.leics.gov.uk/ePlanning/loadFullDetails.do?aplId=34187 There is a local group investigating this proposal who opposed the original Minorca application, the MINORCA OPENCAST PROTEST GROUP: MOPG.

SHOTTON SOUTH WEST (NEAR CRAMLINGTON, NORTHUMBERLAND) (Northumberland County Council)(Entered the Public Domain : July 2013) (Planning Application ) (250,000 tonnes) (Banks Mining)

A planning application for a proposed extension to the Shotton surface mine site has now been submitted to Northumberland County Council

‘First plans for additional work at Shotton surface mine submitted for planning approval’ (Banks Mining, 3/9/13 @ http://www.banksgroup.co.uk/first-plans-for-additional-work-at-shotton-surface-mine-submitted-for-planning-approval/

WHITEMOSS LANDFILL, WESTERN EXTENSION (SKELLMERSDALE, LANCASHIRE) (Planning Inspectorate / National Infrastructure Project) (Entered the Public Domain: January 2011) (Scoping Inquiry) (Tonnage not yet known) (Whitemoss Landfill Ltd) (12.7hectares) Extending the site for landfill purpose will mean excavating ‘incidental’ coal.

There is a group campaigning against this proposal ACTION TO REDUCE RECYLING AND OUR WASTE: ARROW. You can contact Arrow @ nicola.escott@arrow.org.uk

Ref: '2013 Review of Prospective Surface Mines in England Scotland and Wales', The Loose Anti Opencast Network, Steve Leary, January 2013 @ http://coalaction.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/S1-PROSPECTIVE-OPENCAST-SITES.pdf


DEVELOPMENTS IN PLANNING APPLICATIONS FOR NEW OPENCAST SITES IN SCOTLAND IN 2013 (All this information,'New Sites Approved', 'Application Withdrawn ' and 'Prospective English Opencast Sites' are extracts from '2013 Review of Prospective Surface Mines in England Scotland and Wales', The Loose Anti Opencast Network (LAON), January 2013. The full reference is cited at the end.

NEW SCOTTISH OPENCAST SITES APPROVED IN 2013

CAULDHALL, ROSEWELL (Midlothian) (Application)(Scottish Coal) (10m tonnes) (495 hectare site) (Working period 12.5 yrs) ( Ref No 13/00105/DPP) This application was approved at a meeting of the Planning Committee of Midlothian Council on 19/11/13. For a copy of the Officer’s Report recommending approval see 7(b) Caudhall Moor 1300105 DPP – Report @ http://www.midlothian.gov.uk/meetings/meeting/278/planning_committee

GREENBURN ‐ WELLHILL FARM EXTENSION, (East Ayrshire Council) (Scoping Inquiry) (Kier Minerals) (750,000) (127ha) East Ayrshire gave approval for this plan at a meeting of its Planning Committee on 10/8/13. ‘Greenburn surface mine allowed 750,000 tonne extension’ (Mineral Planning, 7/9/13) @ http://www.dcservices.co.uk/news/1148986/

For the Planning Officer’s Report see Report by Head of Planning and Economic Development on the Greenburn- Well Hill Farm Extension.

http://docs.east-ayrshire.gov.uk/crpadmmin/2012%20agendas/planning%20committee/10%20august%202012/Wellhill%20Farm,%20Cumnock%20-%20Kier%20Construction%20Ltd.pdf

HYNDSHAW FARM, CARLUKE (Sth. Lanarkshire) (stage not known) (A G Land Purchase) (36,000 tonnes) (7.3ha) According to this news report, approval was given for this site on 12/5/13

‘Controversial opencast coal mine at Carluke’s Hyndshaw Farm is approved by council planners’ (Carluke Gazette, 15/5/13 @ http://www.carlukegazette.co.uk/news/local-headlines/controversial-opencast-coal-mine-at-carluke-s-hyndshaw-farm-is-approved-by-council-planners-1-2929997

The Officers Report recommending approval can be read here: http://ecas.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/viewDoc.asp?c=e%97%9De%93j%80%88

PROPOSED SITE WITHDRAWN FROM SEEKING PLANNING APPROVAL

BENBAIN REMAINDER, CHALMERSTON SURFACE MINE COMPLEX, DALMELLINGTON (East Ayrshire, Application No 12/0093/PP) (Entered the Public Domain : June 2011) (Application) (Scottish Coal) (1,200,000 tonnes) (Total size of the site, 723 hectares, of which 55 hectares ‘will be disturbed’ by this application.

‘Opencast plan withdrawn at last minute‘ (Cumnock Chronicle, 14/3/13) @

http://www.cumnockchronicle.com/news/roundup/articles/2013/03/14/450179-opencast-plan-withdrawn-at-last-minute/

PROSPECTIVE NEW SCOTTISH OPENCAST MINES IN 2013

AULDTON HEIGHTS (South Lanarkshire Council), Ref: CL/10/X0519/NEW ( he cycle for this site application entered the Public Domain: September 2012. (Application) (Scottish Coal) (420,000 tonnes)

See the following; Lesmahagow Community Council: Opencast @ http://www.lesmahagow-cc.org/opencast.asp

Link to application papers on the South Lanarkshire Web Site @ http://pbsportal.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/Northgate/PlanningExplorerV17/Generic/StdDetails.aspx?PT=Planning%20Applications%20On-Line&TYPE=PL/PlanningPK.xml&PARAM0=94464&XSLT=/Northgate/PlanningExplorerV17/SiteFiles/Skins/SouthLanarkshire/xslt/PL/PLDetails.xslt&FT=Planning%20Application%20Details&PUBLIC=N&XMLSIDE=&DAURI=PLANNING

BROKEN CROSS NORTH (EAST) EXTENSION, (South Lanarkshire Council, Ref : CL/10/X0520/NEW) (Entered the Public Domain: October 2010) (Application) (Scottish Coal) (30.8 hectares) (1m)

Link to application papers on the South Lanarkshire Web Site @ http://pbsportal.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/Northgate/PlanningExplorerV17/Generic/StdDetails.aspx?PT=Planning%20Applications%20On-Line&TYPE=PL/PlanningP

GALAWHISTLE (SPIRESLACK EXTENSION),GLENBURN nr MULKIRK (East Ayrshire: Reference No 12/0657/PP) (Application) (Scottish Coal) (3.500,000) (Total size of the site 725 hectares, but this application refers to 108 hectares) For more details about this Application see the East Ayrshire Council’s web pages for this application at http://eplanning.east-ayrshire.gov.uk/online/applicationDetails.do?action=showSummary&caseNo=12/0657/PP

HARDGATEHEAD SITE, EAST OF WILSONTOWN SURFACE MINE (South Lanarkshire Council, (Scoping Inquiry) (Halls Construction Services) (400,000 tonnes) (133 hts) (Application No CL/12/X0661/NEW)

According to a phone call made to Sth Lanarkshire Council on 16/12/13 this application is still at the Scoping stage. See St Lanarkshire’s web pages for this site for more information about this application @ http://pbsportal.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/Northgate/PlanningExplorer/Generic/StdDetails.aspx?PT=Planning%20Applications%20On-Line&TYPE=PL/PlanningPK.xml&PARAM0=102967&XSLT=/Northgate/PlanningExplorer/SiteFiles/Skins/SouthLanarkshire/xslt/PL/PLDetails.xslt&FT=Planning%20Application%20Details&PUBLIC=Y&XMLSIDE=/Northgate/PlanningExplorer/SiteFiles/Skins/SouthLanarkshire/Menus/PL.xml&DAURI=PLANNING

HEADLESS CROSS EAST, North Lanarkshire / Hargreaves Surface Mining / 1.1m For more information on this application see Application Summary; 04/00727/MIN | Extraction of Coal (1.1 million tonnes) by Opencast Methods, Diversion of Public Road (B715, immediately South of A71) and Restoration of Land | Land North And South Of Headlesscross A71 Shotts @ https://eplanning.northlan.gov.uk/Online/applicationDetails.do?action=showSummary&caseNo=04/00727/MIN

An initial application to surface mine 1.1Mt of coal from this site was submitted in 2004. Apparently it was either refused, or Scottish Coal did not pursue the application. At least two major objections had been lodged, by West Lothian Council over cumulative impacts and lack of clarity on how the working of this site would relate to the working of another proposed site at Badallan. Agents for Shell lodged an objection over no information as to what would happen to a pipeline they owned that dissected the site.

A 2nd round of consultations occurred in 2007/8 over a revised submission, but again these two consultees lodged objections to the plans.

A third round of consultations began in February 2012, which is still ongoing. In November 2012 Hargreaves Surface Mining, in its 1st Scottish Coalfields Information Newsletter, announced that it had taken over this application and ‘ will seek to progress the planning application to a positive conclusion in due course’ ‘Scottish Coalfields Information Newsletter, November 2013’, P 7 @ http://www.hsgplc.co.uk/uploads/communityinformationnewsletternovember2013.pdf

This is a link to North Lanarkshire’s Web pages for this application: https://eplanning.northlan.gov.uk/Online/simpleSearchResults.do;jsessionid=4A39BE01CBEB9C48E223C13AE7A93BC2?action=firstPage

MAINSHILL EXTENSION (South Lanarkshire Council, Reference No CL/13/0097,(Scoping Inquiry) , (Scottish Coal) ( Size and Coal Tonnage not known. According to a phone call made to Sth. Lanarkshire Council on 16/12/13 this application is still at the Scoping stage. See St Lanarkshire’s web pages for this site for more information about this application @ http://pbsportal.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/Northgate/PlanningExplorer/Generic/StdDetails.aspx?PT=Planning%20Applications%20On-Line&TYPE=PL/PlanningPK.xml&PARAM0=104127&XSLT=/Northgate/PlanningExplorer/SiteFiles/Skins/SouthLanarkshire/xslt/PL/PLDetails.xslt&FT=Planning%20Application%20Details&PUBLIC=Y&XMLSIDE=/Northgate/PlanningExplorer/SiteFiles/Skins/SouthLanarkshire/Menus/PL.xml&DAURI=PLANNING

MUIR DEAN REVISED (NORTHERN EXTENSION) (Fife ) (ATH Resources) (Application) (750,000) (Total Area 226ha)(Ref 12/02108/EIA ) For more information on this proposal see: http://planning.fife.gov.uk/online/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=documents&keyVal=M4KGW2HFT8000

Fife Council Planning » Application Summary : 12/02108/EIA | Amendment to approved extraction area for the winning and working of coal, relocation of site infrastructure and amended restoration scheme | Proposed Open Cast Coal Site Muir Dean Inverkeithing Road Crossgates Fife @ http://planning.fife.gov.uk/online/simpleSearchResults.do?action=firstPage On the 16/12/13, according to the Fife Council web site a decision on this application was still pending.

RUSHA EXTENSION, NEAR BREICH (West Lothian Council Ref 0734/M/12) (Planning Application) (Banks Group) (140,000) (154 hectares) RUSHA EXTENSION (Modification of planning obligation relating to planning application 1199/M/07 (grid ref. 298252 66010), (West Lothian) (Scoping Inquiry) (H J Banks) (Seeking permission to extract an extra 140,000 tonnes, making 1.65m in all) (Ref No 0381/PO/12) (154ha) (Case Officer: Ms Gillian Laing?)

Banks gained approval for the original Rusha opencast site in 2009, to mine 1.5m tonnes of coal over a 7 yr period. They did not commence work on the site until January 2012. In August 2012, Banks began a public consultation exercise into extending the sites extraction area (but not the overall size of the site or the sites duration, to mine an extra 140,000 tonnes of coal. Banks also sought permission to be allowed to import coal onto the site for blending .

On the 16/12/13 comments on the application could still be put on the West Lothian Council web site. This is a link to the case files for this planning application: http://planning.westlothian.gov.uk/WAM133/showCaseFile.do;jsessionid=ADBED57BD0AF0E76FF74EDA9044B2E4A?action=show&appType=Planning&appNumber=0734/M/12

ST. NINIANS EXTENSION, KINGSEAT (3m north of Dunfirmline) (Fife Council Ref 10/03505/EIA + Scottish Government) (Planning Application) (Scottish Coal ) (3,400,000 tonnes)(269 hectares) On the 16/12/13 comments on the application could still be put on the Fife Council web site. This is a link to the case files for this planning application: http://planning.fife.gov.uk/online/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=L95L6BHF03700

WELLSGREEN (Fife Council / Levenmouth Area Committee Ref 11/04265/EIA) (Application) (Hall Construction Services) (800,000) On the 16/12/13 accoring to the Fife Council web site, this application was still pending a decision. Here is a link to the case files for this planning application: http://planning.fife.gov.uk/online/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=LPTKTKHF01A00

Ref: '2013 Review of Prospective Surface Mines in England Scotland and Wales', The Loose Anti Opencast Network, Steve Leary, January 2013 @ http://coalaction.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/S1-PROSPECTIVE-OPENCAST-SITES.pdf

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