A disused landfill site in Westbury could be repurposed into a 3.5MW solar farm following a planning application from the site’s operator, Viridor.
Westbury Landfill Site stopped accepting waste in 2004 and is now fully restored to grassland. Although the site is still currently producing landfill gas from the southern cells, gas extraction from the northern cells, where the solar site is planned, has ceased. Viridor also predicts that the production of landfill gas in economic quantities will cease in five to six years.
The proposed solar farm will be constructed in two phases, covering 10 hectares. Viridor predicts that the 3.5MW site will produce enough renewable electricity to power 1,120 homes every year.
Marcus Du Pree Thomas, Viridor’s development manager said: “We believe this site is highly suitable for solar panel installation, as it has been used for energy generation for many years and the electricity generation infrastructure is already in place.
“The location, adjacent to the existing cement plant and clay pit, means the character of the area will not change and the current grassland/grazing can remain and continue to support the local biodiversity.”
If granted planning permission the proposed site will significantly help achieve Wiltshire’s target of 28.6MW of local ground-mounted solar.