(Originally posted on my other blog, but it’s another important matter. See, I’ve not completely given up the soapbox.)
Controversial Nocton Dairies, which was a proposed industrial dairy farm that masqueraded as environmentally friendly and good for the world, has withdrawn its plans:
The Environment Agency objected to the farm saying it posed an ‘unacceptable risk to groundwater supplies’ and was not satisfied tens of thousands of tonnes of slurry expected to be produced by the cows every year would be safely disposed of.
Who’d have thought it? Oh, most people. This is quite a blow to the view of scaling-up agriculture to please the supermarkets, which would have driven the industry down the “lowest price cul-de-sac” – and therefore crippled smaller (i.e most other) farmers. And also quite a blow to the folk behind Nocton, who have a strong online presence and a lot of corporate spin behind them. (The last time I posted something about them, within minutes someone had left a trolling comment on behalf of their PR team.) 14,000 people signed a petition to block the plans, too, so this is somewhat of a triumph for local communities. Though I’m sure it won’t stop them trying again.
(By the way, here’s what some of those concerns might have been. I haven’t seen the report yet, but I’m guessing it’s nitrates.)
Thanks for carrying this story – if you don’t mind, I’d like to point out that there was a petition with something like 53 thousand signatures and at the last count there were also more than 16 thousand individual objections to North Kesteven District Council – probably a record. Thank goodness the Environment Agency had the expertise and the commitment to check the plans thoroughly and the courage to stand by their objections.
Was it really that many by the end? Thanks for pointing that out, Deborah. And yes: I imagine there was quite some pressure on the EA for this.