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Plans for nine new whisky warehouses to be built on Islay have been put on hold after environmental chiefs raised concerns.
The proposal for the maturation facilities to be placed at the Ardnahoe Distillery, at Port Askaig, had initially been recommended for approval by an Argyll and Bute Council officer.
But after the publication of a handling report, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) advised that they felt more information was needed.
At its virtual meeting on Wednesday, October 20, the council’s planning, protective services and licensing (PPSL) committee unanimously agreed to continue consideration of the plans.
An updated report to the committee said: ‘Since the publication of the officer’s report of handling SEPA has provided comment in relation to the potential storage of hazardous substances under the Control of Major Accident Hazards (Amendment) Regulations 2005 (COMAH) and a lack of detail on the procedural, design and modelling that needs to be addressed prior to the commencement of works.
‘Although these matters would ordinarily be addressed under a separate application for Hazardous Substances Consent and building warrant discussions with SEPA have confirmed that the resolution to their concerns could result in necessary material changes to the planning application.
‘For example, the building layout may need to alter to provide sufficient distance in the event of a fire, or the SuDS (sustainable drainage systems) scheme may require an amended to the layout to ensure sufficient levels of treatment to contain a pollution event.
‘Therefore, officers consider it expedient to delay the determination of the application to allow the applicant to liaise directly with SEPA to resolve this issue.’