Southern Highlands residents are intensifying their campaign against a proposed large plastic recycling plant as more details emerge about its operations.
- A petition to the NSW Parliament opposing a proposed plastics recycling plant in the Southern Highlands is attracting growing support
- Residents are concerned about noise, traffic and water impacts and say it’s simply in the wrong location
- The proponent says it will generate up to 140 equivalent full-time jobs when fully operational
Plans show the $70 million facility near Moss Vale would involve the construction of acres of buildings that would operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, close to residential homes.
An online petition to parliament has attracted more than 3,400 signatures with local Sam Jones one of many speaking out.
“It’s a massively over-scale proposal for a country town of 7,000 people,” he said.
Mr Jones said the zoning was simply wrong for such a large facility.
“The only other type of organisation this big, or not even this big, is in Melbourne next to a railway station near the airport.
“The only thing [this plan] has got going for it is the Hume Highway,” he said.
Local MP backs residents
Local state MP for Goulburn Wendy Tuckerman is backing the residents.
“I just honestly believe that this is not the site for this particular project and I will stand by the community,” she said.
Ms Tuckerman said because it was a state significant development it was due to be determined by an independent planning panel, not the local council.
“When we look at the LEP [Local Environment Plan], yes, it is indeed zoned ‘general industrial’, but my concern is the original Development Control Plan that the council had put forward had suggested that this particular land should be set aside for ancillary support, that is office or low-impact industry, to allow for a buffer adjoining residential land.”
A statement from Wingecarribee Council said the council’s only formal role in the approval process was to undertake an assessment once the Environmental Impact Statement had been lodged.
The council said it had provided the proponent with information on water and sewerage connections and had recommended an additional Social Impact Assessment.
140 jobs could be generated
The proponent Plasrefine Recycling Pty Ltd has posted information on its website saying the plant would use about 46 kilolitres of water per day, with up to 80 per cent sourced from water harvesting.
The company said the existing vehicle access point via Beaconsfield Road would be used only during the construction stage, with a new access road to be built, subject to agreement, otherwise Wingecarribee Council would compulsorily acquire the land.
The business will generate 140 full-time equivalent jobs when fully operational, according to the company’s website.
Plasrefine Recycling Pty Ltd did not respond to a request for comment.