North West Wales

Waste water treatment plant for closed Cilgwyn tip

Cilgwyn tip
Image caption The tip closed after years of complaints from local residents

A waste water treatment plant is to be built at a former rubbish tip at Cilgwyn near Caernarfon, Gwynedd.

The Gwynedd council-owned site was closed in January last year, after years of complaints by local residents.

It is being covered with slate waste and will be "capped" off next year, but gas and water waste is still produced.

The water treatment works has been welcomed by the local environmental group which campaigned for the tip's closure.

The facility for the leachate - the liquid that drains from a landfill - will be sited near a tunnel which joins the Cilgwyn landfill site.

It will then drain into a water course on the south side of the site.

Gwynedd councillors heard water quality from the site had been monitored since 2004.

Capping the tip will create a more "concentrated" leachate as surface water will no longer drain through, and the plant will deal with this under Environment Agency specifications.

'Beneficial effect'

The 26m (85ft) by 14m (45ft) structure will feature treatment tanks, a control room and "associated structures".

In his report to councillors, Aled Davies, head of the regulatory department, said the treatment facility would have a "beneficial effect on the quality of surface water, as well as providing water quality safeguarding measures in the long term".

Councillors gave the plan the go-ahead with some conditions including "mitigating details for noise control" and the recording of archaeological features before construction.

Sandra Hilton, chairman of CAREG (Cilgwyn and area residents' environment group), welcomed the plant.

"The only criticism is that it should have been put there a long, long time ago," she said.

"I am also concerned that the plant will only deal with water from one part of the tip, whereas the water comes out in a myriad places.

"I am very pleased that this is going on though," she added.

The methane gas produced by the estimated 80m deep pile of rubbish at Cilgwyn is used to produce electricity which is sold to the National Grid.

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