£120m waste energy park for Rhondda approved
Planners have approved the creation of a £120m waste to energy plant in Rhondda Cynon Taf.
Green energy firm Enviroparks says the plant, near Tower Colliery in Hirwaun, will create 200 temporary jobs and 200 permanent positions.
But some people living in Hirwaun and the villages of Penderyn and Rhigos are opposed to the plans.
They say the plant is too close to the reservoir serving the Cynon Valley and will blight the landscape.
The proposals needed the backing of both the council and the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority as the 20 acre site straddles both areas.
Approval has been granted, subject to certain conditions.
Construction is due to start around the middle of next year, creating up to 200 jobs while the site is being developed, and the same number of full time jobs on completion in early 2013.
Developers say it will produce enough energy for 40,000 homes and offer recycling facilities and an alternative to incineration.
Any extra electricity will be fed back into the National Grid.
The plans have met no objection from Welsh Water but local opponents say they will fight them all the way.
Governments at Welsh and UK level are keen to move away from landfill and find other ways of disposing of waste.
The Environment Agency recently gave the final go-ahead for a controversial £150m incinerator in Splott, Cardiff.