Plan for power plant at King’s Lynn paper mill wins council support

Palm Paper - Paper mill beside the river Great Ouse, Saddlebow King's Lynn. ENGANL00120130404124611

Palm Paper - Paper mill beside the river Great Ouse, Saddlebow King's Lynn. ENGANL00120130404124611

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Councillors have given their backing to a paper company’s plans to build a gas turbine on their Lynn site.

The scheme for the Palm Paper premises, off Poplar Avenue, was debated by members of the West Norfolk Council planning committee on Monday, where members supported the findings of a report which will now be submitted to inspectors.

The German-owned company wants to build a combined cycle gas turbine, which it says would generate 
162 megawatts of power.

It says the facility would be powered by natural gas and is designed to “provide electricity and steam entirely for internal use within the Palm Paper mill”.

And the plant would also require the construction of a separate gas pipeline, which will be the subject of a separate planning application.

But, because the plant would generate more than 50 megawatts, it is classed as a “nationally significant infrastructure project”.

That means the government will have the final decision over whether it can proceed or not.

The borough council is registered as an interested party to the proposal.

Reports published ahead of the meeting showed the Lynn consultative committee’s planning sub-group had voiced concerns of an 80 metre high stack, which the company say is needed to vent exhaust gases from the plant.

However, the group said it recognised there was a trade-off between maintaining air quality standards and the height of the chimney.

The company has been proposing to build its own power plant for the past two years, in a bid to reduce its reliance on imported energy sources.

A final decision on whether the plant will be given the go-ahead is not expected until early next year.