‘UNTOLD disruption’ could be caused in Westbury if plans to lay 10km of cable from the site of the gasification plant to Frome is approved, say climate change protestors.

Northacre Renewable Energy Ltd has submitted plans to fit the underground grid connection to link to an Electricity Substation in Frome.

The grid system would see 10.61km of cable laid in trenches 1.45m deep and 0.45m wide, of which around four km would be in Wiltshire and the rest in Somerset.

Andrew Murrison MP said: “I object since it is linked to an application for a gasification plant which I strongly oppose on the grounds of possible environmental impact, existing over provision of incinerators, the health precautionary principal, disruption to the lives of my constituents and the small amount of energy that would be generated.”

52 people have also spoken out in objection to the plans including Westbury resident Alex Duce who said: “This will rip up pristine countryside and cause untold disruption to Westbury.”

Harriet James from Warminster said the proposal contradicts plans by central Government to be carbon neutral by 2050 and added: “The electricity would become progressively more polluting in terms of greenhouse gas emissions compared with a decarbonising UK energy mix in line with UK climate change targets.”

However NRE said steps have been taken to make sure that habitats will not be effected.

The application said the company had spoken to individual land owners to create the shortest possible length and added that the cable would be laid around the outside of farming fields to minimise disruption.

Concerns were raised about the impact on waterways, however NRE said it would lay drill down and lay cable underneath any stream. They added: “This has the advantage of not causing any water related issues or disturbing any habitats and species it may support.”

Speaking on behalf of Northacre Renewable Energy Ltd, Lesley Loane said: “This is not a choice that NRE have made, it is dictated by what the utility company says is available. Had any local options other than a 10km cable with its high costs, been available, NRE would have sought to utilise them.”

Wiltshire Council has recommended the application be approved.

The Strategic Planning Committee meeting to decide takes place on Thursday June 20 at Monkton Park in Chippenham.