Welsh mining and resources company Miller Argent is appealing the rejection of its application to develop the Nant Llesg opencast mine, located at the top of the Rhymney Valley in Wales. Caerphilly County Borough Council’s Planning Committee rejected the application in 2015 after the local community opposed the development.
Lodging an appeal
A Miller Argent spokesperson revealed that the mining contractor has lodged an appeal with the Planning Inspectorate to develop the mine, which is located between Rhymney and Fochriw. However, the appeal is still pending, and in the meantime the company is looking to update the surveys of the opencast mine, as some of the surveys submitted have a time limit.
Miller Argent said that the Nant Llesg mine is a major site for natural resources for Wales, and it would create thousands of jobs in the area. It has been estimated that the mine has the capacity to yield close to 6 million tonnes of coal over a period of 14 years and would create 239 direct jobs.
The mining contractor already operates the neighbouring Ffos-y-Fran opencast mine, which has recently witnessed protests, with ten protestors chaining themselves to the equipment and machinery used in the mine.
The local community started questioning the need to develop Nant Llesg after Miller Argent acknowledged that the coal mined from Ffos-y-Fran was no longer being supplied to Aberthaw power station.
United Valleys Action Group Chair Terry Evans pointed out that since Aberthaw power station was not using coal from Ffos-y-Fran mine, it did not make sense that Miller Argent should be allowed to mine the Nant Llesg site.
Evans stated that the United Valleys Action Group wanted Miller Argent to withdraw its appeal. He said that this would give the residents of the area peace of mind as mining activities would not have an adverse impact on the environment or mar the visual beauty of the surroundings.