Test turbine is in the pipeline now

The United Utilities wastewater treatment works site off Emnie Lane
The United Utilities wastewater treatment works site off Emnie Lane
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A planning application for a ‘test’ wind turbine in Leyland is being drawn up.

As previously reported in the Guardian, United Utilities wants to build a 79m wind turbine at its wastewater treatment works site off Emnie Lane, near Leyland Lane.

But before it goes ahead with the ambitious proposals, the company wants to erect a 40m test turbine at the site for up to 12 months, to help determine if a permanent structure would be suitable there.

In February, the firm submitted a request to South Ribble Council to ask if an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) would be needed ahead of a formal planning application being submitted.

It has been decided that an EIA will not be necessary, so the firm is now putting together an application for the test turbine, which will need to go through the official planning process, and will be open to public consultation. Chris Matthews from United Utilities said: “We’re at an early stage in the process, gathering data.

“We’ve written to the planners to find out whether an environmental impact assessment would be necessary as part of any planning application for a wind turbine.

“We are also in the process of preparing a planning application for a temporary wind monitoring mast to help us assess the site’s suitability.

“In the next month we will be writing to local residents to let them know about the plans and we’ll continue to update people when the consultation process begins later this year.

“There will be plenty of opportunity for people to let us know their views.”

Neighbours have not been able to submit their views to the council yet, but told the Guardian they have concerns over noise and appearance.