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Planners back tomato glasshouse and AD scheme

A plan for an anaerobic digestion plant paired with a commercial glasshouse facility has been approved at a former coal mine in Yorkshire.

City of York Council has backed Peel Environmental’s plans for the £23.5m facility, which will recover heat and electricity from up to 60,000 tonnes of organic waste per year on the former north Selby site in Wheldrake.

A horticultural glasshouse, which will use some of the heat produced, will be developed alongside the facility and operated by Howden-based specialist Plant Raisers to propagate mainly tomato plants.

Peel Environmental director Myles Kitcher said: “As we look to bring forward other sites for the co-location of waste infrastructure, it is encouraging to see that the value of what we are trying to achieve in terms of developing mixed-use sites with waste infrastructure development at their core has been recognised. 

“We are confident that we can quickly get this scheme off the ground and into operation.”

The facility will provide up to 256 jobs during construction and 56 full time positions and 50 seasonal positions once operational.

Nigel Bartle, chairman of the British Tomato Growers’ Association, said: “Yorkshire has a long and proud history of producing tomatoes, however to secure a sustainable future the industry must look to alternative energy sources. The north Selby project is an excellent opportunity to do this, both maintaining production and jobs in the county”.

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