Mid Wales Electricity Connection (N Grid)

Enquiry received via email

Mid Wales Electricity Connection (N Grid)

13 April 2011
Ken Whitmore


I would like to ask a few questions about the project that threatens our community ? Montgomershire.
Firstly I would like to say that the thoughts behind wind farm sites if flawed. No one thought how they would get the power out of these remote areas without devastating the local communities. It is the large power lines and 4,000KV hub that may be built in the area concerns me. I have a young family and am not prepared to risk their health (regardless as to whether or not the health risks from EMF?s is proven ? the Sage report stated that we should take the side of caution) by living near such a development. So my questions are as follows,
1. Will there be compensation/hardship fund to allow local people to move away. After all several studies have confirmed that house prices can reduce by 35% near such developments. (If it happens in Abermule on a personal basis I will be plunged into negative equity and unable to re-mortgage). Why should local people suffer financially when the reason behind it was not their doing?
Other countries have such a policy and such a fund was set up for people living next to the proposed high speed rail link by the Transport Minister.
2. Why are the cables not being buried underground where emf?s are proven to have less effect? A study by Shrewsbury Hospital showed that Abermule was a hotspot for cancer because of the existing power lines ? more will make it worse and cause more hotspots along the proposed power cable routes. Equally siting the hub if Cefn Coch will make another ?cancer hot spot?
3. I understand that each developer receives 22,000 euros for each turbine built ? Could not some of that be given back to the local community so that families can move away if they want to etc.
4. How will the local road networks be upgraded to cope with the large loads?
5. Why is the National Grid allowed to go against their own policy by disregarding the local communities with regards the siting of the Hub and choosing power cable routes?
6. Why was the proposed Hub site not located nearer the windfarms away form housing etc.
7. Why are we persisting with wind power when they are only 18% efficient and other European countries are scrapping their windfarm developments?
8. Why does the government persist by stating that wind turbines are green energy? It is common knowledge that the energy used to make them is not re-couped in the lift time of the wind turbine.
I would appreciate if you could answer these questions.

Advice given

I believe from the information you have provided that the scheme that you are referring to is that of National Grid?s construction of a new 400kV electricity connection between Shropshire and Powys. This project is currently at the 'pre-application' stage of our process, as set out in the Planning Act 2008. During the pre-application stage, there is a duty on the developer to undertake consultation with people living in the vicinity of the proposed project, and to have regard to responses to that consultation. In order for comments to be taken into account at this stage, comments and responses should be directed to National Grid as the developer of the project.
The IPC's role at the pre-application stage is to provide advice about the process of making an application, or the process of making a representation about an application. We are unable to provide legal opinions or comment on the merits of the scheme or national policy. All advice that we give is recorded via an advice log, in line with s.51 of the Planning Act 2008. This log is published on our website. attachment 1
With the above in mind, may I therefore suggest that the queries set out in your email are raised directly with the promoter of the Mid Wales Connection scheme. The National Grid project team can be contacted on 0800 019 5325 or by email at national [email protected] There is also a project website;
attachment 2 .
Your local council also plays a role in the process at the pre-application stage. Local authorities are invited to review the developer's draft Statement of Community Consultation (SoCC) to influence the way in which a developer intends to consult local people. Once an application is submitted, the council is asked for a view on the adequacy of the developer's consultation. You may therefore wish to copy to the council any comments you send to the developer at the pre-application stage. Further information on this and how you can be involved in the developers? consultation is detailed in advice note 8.2, this can be found at: attachment 3.
Following the pre-application stage, and if an application is accepted for examination by the Infrastructure Planning Commission, you are able to become directly involved in the examination of an application. A suite of advice notes has been published providing information on how and when members of the public can become involved in the planning process and have their say. In particular, advice note 8.3 provides information on how to register and make a written representation. This can be found at: attachment 3.

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