PLANS for two 58km pipelines stretching from Bromborough and the River Mersey to Northwich to create 10 underground natural gas cavities have been rejected by Cheshire West planners.
The former Cheshire County Council had also turned down a similar planning application by King Street Energy (Cheshire) Ltd.
A public inquiry and appeal into the refusal will take place this year.
Cheshire West’s strategic planning committee was consulted under the Pipelines Act 1962, which states the Secretary of State will make the final decision. They can also order compulsory purchases to build the two underground pipelines.
Construction of these will only occur should the Secretary allow the appeal for the cavities.
Under the proposals, one pipeline would be used to create the cavities through solution mining at a site at King Street, Northwich, and the other would flush out the brine into the River Mersey.
Pumping stations would also be needed at either end of the pipeline and a further pumping station half way along at East Clifton, Frodsham.
Committee members said the scheme wasn’t detailed enough to determine if there would be any impact on protected species and habitats; the pipeline and pumping stations would be visually intrusive, affecting the openness of the Green Belt in Frodsham; and the project did not constitute sustainable development and would not conserve or safeguard finite mineral resources.
The committee unanimously agreed with Cllr Reggie Jones. He said: “Given the compelling case against the proposals I recommend we refuse it.”
Their objections will now be sent to the Secretary of State.