Objections to planned sand extraction from Appin glen
More than 1,000 objections have been lodged against a proposal to extract sand and gravel from a field in an Argyll glen.
Quarry firm A and L McCrae Limited plans to remove 15,000 tonnes of material annually over five years from the site in Glen Creran in Appin.
The landowner said the site would be restored to pasture land.
But MSP Mike Russell said the glen was part of an "extraordinary landscape" and the quarry should not go ahead.
Landowner Dominque Collinet, whose family has owned land in the glen since the late 1970s, told BBC Alba the restoration work that would follow the quarry would improve the quality of the land.
He said the field could then be used for pasture and growing silage.
Alasdair McCrae, of A and L McCrae Limited, said the site contained high-quality building sand. He said there was a shortage of the material that could be locally sourced in Argyll.
He said the sand extraction operations would be screened from nearby houses by existing woodland, and a single track road to the proposed site would be improved.
Mr McCrae said: "The single track road is roughly 700m long and we propose to put in three lay-bys and a new bell mouth at the farm entrance to alleviate congestion."
He added that lorries going to and from the site would travel no faster than 15mph on the single-track road, and measures would be taken to avoid disturbing wildlife.
But Mr Russell said: "There are some places where development should be okay, some places you say 'this is just the wrong place'.
"Anybody who sees the glen sees this extraordinary landscape.
"Development should not take place in this glen."
Tony Kersley, a lead campaigner against the quarry, said the sand extraction operations would be "disastrous" for tourism and Sites of Special Scientific Importance in the area.
He said: This area is just too sensitive."