Gas store consultation soon

Keith Budinger, newly appointed chief executive at Halite Energy
Keith Budinger, newly appointed chief executive at Halite Energy

THE company which plans to store 1.2m tonnes of gas near Fleetwood insists local people will be fully consulted about the plans in the next few weeks.

Halite Energy, which reformed after gas giant Canatxx had plans to store gas in salt caverns under the River Wyre rejected three times, say they plan to consult extensively with campaigners in April.

And the company have just appointed a new chief executive, Cambridge graduate Keith Budinger, who has worked as a director for United Utilities in Lancashire during the last four years.

Mr Budinger, Halite’s chief executive, said: “We fully understand people are anxious to see details of our proposed project and want to let the community know they will have the opportunity to view and comment on our plans when our formal consultation begins on April 4.

“An effective community consultation is central to our work and we look forward to hearing the valuable views of local people as the process moves forward next month.

“I’m convinced an underground gas storage facility at Preesall can be constructed and operated safely.” Halite’s plans have to be submitted to the IPC, a new independent Government body which examines applications for nationally significant projects, which requires extensive consultation.

Events, where plans will be showcased, will be held in May at various Wyre venues including Fleetwood’s North Euston Hotel, Thornton Little Theatre and Stalmine Village Hall.

The proposed gas caverns would be under the river, halfway between Fleetwood and Preesall.