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New biomass plant granted planning permission in UK

Renewable energy developer Iceni Energy (IE) has had planning application for a new biomass plant near Snetterton, Norfolk approved.

The plant will primarily burn cereal and oilseed rape straw to produce enough power to meet the yearly energy consumption of between 62,000 and 68,000 homes. IE engaged with over 2,300 local residents via a website, local exhibition and community newsletter and learned that 73% were for the proposal. The application was submitted in January.

‘Since we submitted our application to Breckland Council, it received a further 50 letters of support from residents who have recognised the benefits the biomass plant will bring to the area. More letters of support were received than objection letters,’ says IE CEO Andy Hilton.

‘As well as providing 80 permanent jobs and delivering fuel, the plant will unlock Breckland Council’s plans to double 30 hectares of business and light industry by providing the grid connection infrastructure required. This expansion would then generate between 500 and 1,500 jobs by 2021 in the Snetterton Heath Employment area.’

Construction of the new plant is expected to commence in early 2013 and last around two and a half years.