People have until tomorrow evening to give their thoughts to Planning on a Draft Development Framework which could see a new quarry blasted on the Chouet Headland.
Residents of the area are protesting the Framework, saying it flies in the face of protecting the environment. They are urging people to contact Planning to also speak out against the proposals to try and protect what they call 'Guernsey's national park'.
The plans have been online on the States website since April, but it was not brought to the public' attention until more recently. Now, the eight week public consultation is drawing to a close. The final representations can be sent in at 17:00 tomorrow (Friday).
The Loophole tower and magazine on Chouet would be protected, according to the plans.
A spokesperson for the Development & Planning Authority said: "The Draft Development Framework prepared by the Planning Service is intended to provide guidance for the potential development of land for the extraction and processing of granite to produce aggregates. The overall intention is to provide guidance, and to set out the requirements, to help to ensure that mineral extraction can occur in a sustainable and safe way, respecting and protecting the local environment surrounding the site, as well as the amenity of local communities, residents and the local infrastructure.
"The States has already agreed that Chouet headland is a strategic reserve of stone through the Strategic Land Use Plan (2011) and the Island Development Plan (2016) which designates Chouet headland as a Safeguarded Area for possible mineral extraction."
While the residents and business owners who are linked to Chouet are set to lose out personally, they believe the island is set to lose out as well. The headland is linked to a number of different parts of the community, with a busy beach, the Rocsalt Restaurant, the model aircraft club, the pistol range, a coastal path and more.
A map of the area that would be quarried from the Framework.
The protesters listed the following three reasons as their main concerns in an open letter:
1. Air pollution. Quarrying is associated with high levels of particulate matter, particularly the smallest and most damaging micro particles, which can be carried for great distances on the wind. The level of risk associated with these has only really been appreciated in the last few years, as demonstrated by the change in governmental attitudes to diesel vehicles and their emissions. Silica particles have been recognised as among the most damaging of these and granite can be up to 40% silica.
2. Noise. All quarrying is associated with high levels of noise from machinery, drilling, blasting, dumping, loading and crushing.
3. Traffic. The level of extraction proposed implies a 20 tonne lorry movement every few minutes throughout the working week.
To comment on the Framework, contact the DPA by e-mail at email@example.com or in writing to the Authority until Friday 7 June 2019. The Draft Development Framework can be accessed via the States of Guernsey website.
Pictured top: the Chouet Headland.
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