Gillies Hill

Our top candidate for Mid Scotland and Fife, Mark Ruskell, has pledged to pursue a legal change in the Scottish Parliament which could spell the end for plans to destroy Stirling’s precious Gillies Hill area for quarrying.

Mark’s proposed change to the Environmental Impact Assessment (Scotland) Regulations would force Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) to be required retrospectively for quarry developments where Local Authorities failed to request an EIA before issuing planning consent.

In 2002 Stirling Council failed to request an EIA when the mineral consent for Gillies Hill was being reviewed, leaving the devastating potential impact of the quarry extension ignored.

In England, the Court of Appeal has held that approvals for pre-1948 ‘old mineral permissions’ require a full EIA, establishing this in law. The Scottish Green Party believes that the next session of the Scottish Parliament should amend Scots law to bring it into line with this precedent.

Mark Ruskell said:

“Forcing Hanson to go back to the table to produce an Environmental Assessment showing the true and devastating impact of their quarry would be a major blow against this development. A simple amendment to a very minor piece of legislation at Holyrood is all that is required to bring about this change. The SNP Government made changes to these laws in 2009, but didn’t take the opportunity to amend them to support Gillies Hill. If I’m re-elected to Holyrood, I will look to make this change.

“For too long corporate interests have used and abused the law to push through developments at any cost to our communities. Gillies Hill is a precious asset in its own right which is also loved and enjoyed by many of us who live across the Stirling area. I love biking through the woods, but sometimes just to sit and enjoy the peace and the wildlife is very special, the quarry would destroy this forever. We have to use every tool in the box to stop the quarry extension, including by strengthening protections in law if need be.”

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~ by stirlinggreens on 13. April 2011.

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