Plans submitted for £2bn potash mine on national park

Final plans are being submitted to create Europe's largest potash mine. York Potash hope to build the £2bn mine on the North York Moors National Park. Campaigners argue it could ruin the environment but supporters say it would bring jobs.

Live updates

  1. Calendar

Plan to be submitted for York potash mine

Controversial plans for the world's biggest potash mine to be sunk in the North York Moors National Park are to be submitted today.

Plan to be submitted for York potash mine Credit: http://www.siriusminerals.com/

The firm behind the £1bn scheme near Whitby, says it would create 1,000 jobs, but critics say it would blight one of the region's finest landscapes and pave the way for other large scale developments in Britain's national parks.

The mine would target the world's largest untapped reserve of polyhalite - a mineral which is used as fertiliser to boost crop yields.

North York Moors National Park officials said today the mine is believed to be the largest ever major development proposal submitted to a National Park Authority in England.

If operating today at full capacity of 13 million tonnes of polyhalite ore per year, it is understood that the mine would be the world’s largest potash mine in terms of the amount of potash extracted.

The plan involves the construction of two 1,500 metre deep mine shafts on land at Dove’s Nest Farm, near Sneaton, four miles south of Whitby.

Also planned is a 250 metre deep tunnel running 23 miles from the mine site to Wilton on Teesside where the extracted mineral would be granulated for export.

The tunnel would have an access shaft at Dove’s Nest Farm and three intermediate access points on the route to Wilton, one within the national park, near Egton, the second just outside the park boundaries near Lockwood Beck Reservoir and the third near Guisborough.

The Authority understands the significance of the proposals and will carefully assess the planning considerations of the development which will include the environmental impacts and economic benefits. We will approach the new application with an open mind and the proposed development will be determined in the context of our local plan policies and government policy which is that major development should not take place in National Parks unless there are exceptional circumstances of public interest. I want to assure people that we will take all relevant considerations into account before reaching any decision.

– Chris France, Director of Planning at the North York Moors National Park Authority
Plan to be submitted for York potash mine Credit: http://www.siriusminerals.com/

We believe we have a compelling planning case that clearly demonstrates that the York Potash Project can deliver exceptional economic benefits, not only locally here in North Yorkshire and in Teesside but also for the wider UK economy.

We have planned the project with a very high regard for the environment and where possible minimising associated impacts. However, it is now for each authority to determine the applications according to the relevant policies and we keenly await their decisions.

– Chris Fraser, managing director Sirius Minerals

A decision on whether to grant the mine permission is expected next year.

Plans submitted for £2bn potash mine on national park

York Potash Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Final plans are being submitted to create Europe's largest potash mine. York Potash hope to build the £2bn mine on the North York Moors National Park. Campaigners argue it could ruin the environment but supporters say it would bring jobs.

Last year, the controversial plans were deferred till now. York Potash asked for more time to submit further details on the application - deferring the decision for a third time.

Read More: York Potash mine plans up for discussion

North York Moors National Park Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Advertisement

Back to top