Should The Harris Superquarry Go Ahead? Rural economic development Kenneth Mercer BSc Rural Resources III 16 th December 1994 TABLE OF FIGURES FIGURE 1 LOCATION OF THE SUPERQUARRY 31 SUMMARY There is considerable environmental opposition to the development of the Harris superquarry. This is unlikely to stop the development on its own, but if the Scottish Office decides that the project can go ahead environmental restrictions are likely to be imposed on the operation to minimise, as far as possible, the impact. The reasons for the development centre round the need for economic development to bring jobs and prosperity to this remote area. The life of the quarry is expected to be around 60 years and provide an initial 30 jobs, rising to 80 as the quarry reaches peak production. The question is if super quarry is the best solution to the problems of a remote rural area. What will happen when the jobs come to an end and would another form of investment not be more appropriate to their needs? Would the presence of a quarry restrict the choice for further development? Could an integrated approach be adopted and a 2 nd generation quarry planned? The decision of whether or not to go ahead cannot be delayed indefinitely as Norway and Spain are looking at developing their own.
If it is to go ahead then an early start will give Harris a stronger position in the market. 2 INTRODUCTION This report examines the controversy and key issues surrounding the Rodel, Lingerbay on the southern coast of the Isle of Harris (Figure 1) and attempts to find an acceptable solution. The quarry will hollow out the heart of the mountain but leave enough of a shell to leave the skyline largely unaffected. The whole question of whether or not it should go ahead or not is the subject of the current public enquiry in Stornoway. A decision must be made soon. The market for aggregates is limited, Norway and Spain (Section 3.
... Haq, who was a pioneer of the human development school of thought. In his book on human ... development, he notes: "Sometime back, Tanzania's president ... entire population of the developing world. To put that figure into perspective, consider that Americans spend 8 billion ... compete are not left out altogether. To the rural farmer that lacks roads on which to bring his ...
1, 1991) have their own sites and are also looking at the potential for developing them. FIGURE 1 LOCATION OF THE SUPERQUARRY (Glasgow Herald, 20/10/94) 3 THE ISSUES SURROUNDING THE DEBATE 3. 1 History 1927 A detailed geological survey identified the deposit of anorthosite. 1965 Planning permission was given in principle to quarry the rock. The remit covered a larger site than is planned today. 1966 Some small scale quarrying took place but found an on site rock crushing plant and a deep harbour were necessary for economic viability.
74-76 Outline planning permission was given for quarrying, shipping and loading facilities but this was never acted on. 1977 The Scottish Office issued National Planning Guidelines. Harris was identified as one of 9 potential sites. (The Scotsman 18/7/93) 1980 Ian Wilson, a Scottish entrepreneur specializing in minerals, persuaded Ralph Verney, the advisor to the environmental secretary, to recommend a large scale study on the potential of in Scotland.
The Scottish Office commissioned Dal radian Mineral Services – Wilson and Colin Gribble – to write a report on the prospects. It was published in 1980 and listed 16 potential sites including 5 key sites, one of which was Rodel. Many of the mineral rites were bought by Wilson before he published the report, the rest he acquired later. He sold his idea for the Harris super quarry at Rodel (Figure 1) to Redland Aggregates, and if the quarry goes ahead, he will receive a royalty for each tonne of rock removed.
(New Scientist 1994) 1981 Outline planning permission was given for quarrying but it was not on a large enough scale to be economically viable. 1988 The Scottish Office asked the Western Islands Island Council to develop a policy on mineral extraction. This has still not been done. 1989 Government Planning Guidance Notes predicted a demand for crushed rock. 1991 Consultants Ove Arup surveyed the potential for sites and identified 12 in Norway, 1 – 2 in the north of Spain and less than 4 in Scotland. Redland Aggregates submitted a new planning application to the Western Isles Island Council.
... and why. Potential Ceremony and Reception Sites: Choose a minimum of two potential ceremony sites and two potential reception sites and discuss how ... or a chosen business name is more appropriate. Wedding Planning Project Design Grading Criteria Area Possible Points Points Earned ... a variety of unique situations that influence the wedding planning process. List and thoroughly explain a minimum of ...
1992 The Scottish Office issued a draft report which recognised the potential for Rodel but found that socio-economic benefits needed to be balanced with environmental consequences. (The Scotsman 18/7/93) 1993 A poll was sent out to 1822 islanders asking them to vote on the issue. 1109 replied, which amounted to a 60. 9% response. The results showed that the majority of the Islanders were in favour of the quarry. The votes cast were as follows: For, 682 (62.
1%) and Against, 417 (37. 9%).
There was a strong regional variation though, the further from the site the people were, the more in favour they tended to be. (Glasgow Herald 17/6/93) A week later this poll resulted in the Western Islands Council voting in favour of the planning application by 24 votes to 3. (Glasgow Herald 25/6/93) Western Isles Island Council held a Special meeting in Target. (The Scotsman 18/7/93) The Department of the Environment concluded that England could not meet its own demands for aggregates.
(New Scientist 1994) 1994 A Royal commission report concluded that the demand for aggregates for road construction would be considerably cut by reducing our current dependence on road transport. It recommended that if coastal super quarries were to be granted planning permission then it should be a legal requirement that the quarried rock should be transported by sea. It further concluded that the recycling of construction materials would remove the need for super quarries and reduce the distance over which aggregates would need to be transported. (Royal Commission 1994) By September the Highlands and Islands Enterprise had given its general support to the project and the Highlands and Islands Development Board had approved a grant and loan total ling lb 250, 000 to the company set up by Ian Wilson, Harris Minerals Ltd. (Glasgow Herald 30/9/94) 3. 2 The reasons for the selection of Lingerbay The reasons for the selection of the site were mainly economic: The mountain consists of an estimated potential of 6 million tonnes of anorthosite.
... the band and the role it played in the development of seventies rock music. It will be seen that the band emerged ... mid-seventies, however, these boundaries were eroding from developments within and without rock music. The stylistic diversity that marked its third and ... some of the most significant of these developments. The band’s impact on rock was music was noteworthy: Led Zeppelin rewrote ...
As far as the aggregate industry is concerned this rock is a top quality product, suitable for a producing a wide range of aggregates, gravels and sands. The mountain is situated by a deep glacial sea loch which is required for the access of the 30, 000 tonne ships which will remove the rock. Unless the rock can be directly loaded from the site to the ships the quarry will not be economically viable. The loch is deep enough to accommodate the deep harbour (24 meters) required.
3. 3 The need for economic development Lack of employment drives people out of the countryside. This creates problems as it results in an ageing population and a higher dependant to worker ratio. This has a dramatic effect on the cash flow of the area – As pensioners have less to spend than a paid worker, there is less money spent in the local shops and pubs.
This means in a cut in services – Less profits result in less provision. This is the downward spiral of rural depopulation and deprivation. Deprivation exists if welfare drops below an agreed standard. This definition goes further than the problem of finance.
Education, public transport, healthcare, housing and recreational services are all covered by the above definition. In remote rural areas the general level of these services are clearly lower than the national average. (Midwinter, A and Monaghan 1990) Harris now has a population of 2, 200 which represents a decline of 41% over the last 40 years, for those who remain 33% of households have no adult in work. (The Guardian 8/11/94) Ian Wilson claims that the creation of will bring prosperity to the dieting corners of the Highlands and Islands and is the economic development necessary to reverse this decline. 3.
4 Other incentives Redland Aggregates has conceded annual donations to a local trust fund if the quarry goes ahead. This would rise to a sum of lb 100, 000 as the quarry reached full production. (Glasgow Herald 16/6/94) Ships could provide a cheap piggyback for distributing local produce. (New Scientist 1994) 3. 5 The environmental concerns Ships ballast water could introduce foreign species of sea life. Thesis a concern because without predatory biological control any introduced species could multiply rapidly and put the local marine ecosystem at risk.
... because of the immense popularity of the white British rock musicians. The development of rock music, from its African American blues, rhythm and ... music continue to absorb and reflect upon these developments. Conservatives doubt that rock music should be taught at schools at ... blues, and rock n roll basis through its English ...
(New Scientist 1994) There is particular concern over the introduction of toxic phytoplankton species. (SNH 1994) The area is home to otters. They are protected by the 1981 Wildlife and Countryside Act and some would be displaced by the development. (Scottish Field 1993) The potential for a collision with oil tankers will be greatly increased due to the extra traffic involved.
(Friends of the Earth) Although not a SSSI the site beats the qualifying mark of 300 points and is the home of 149 species of bryophyte (Mosses and liverworts) 7 of which are rare. (The Scotsman 10/10/94) These are particularly vulnerable to dust. Heather and bog mosses, an integral part of the ecosystem, could be sensitive to increases in calcium and soil pH levels. (SNH 1994) Harris is designated as a National Scenic Area and should be preserved. (The Scotsman 10/10/94) Development of a quarry could also restrict some types of other development. Harris has an exceptional asset of a pollution free environment.
This is recognised by Scotia Pharmaceuticals who plan the development of an a micro-algae farm on Harris. This development is under threat because they could not risk any chance of contamination to a product destined for the medical industry. (The Scotsman 3/10/94) 3. 6 Making the quarry more palatable Redland Aggregates has indicated that non resident workers would have to leave the island at weekends to minimise any conflict with the locals. This would be written into their contract of employment. (The Scotsman 13/10/94) A 2 nd generation super quarry would have a dual purpose, it would provide rock for quarrying but this would be part of a construction programme.
The end result would not be just a hole in the ground but could be designed to fill some other use, for example produce HEP. 4 CONCLUSIONS 4. 1 The case for development The Scottish Office approves. (Section 3. 1) Rodel is the best site in geological terms. (Section 3.
2) The quarrying and shipping would be badly needed economic catalysts to the area. (Section 3. 3 and 3. 4) There is a limited demand for aggregates and Spain and Norway are developing their own plans. If the Harris quarry is delayed too long then it will have to face this extra competition. 4.
... Publications, 1988. 66-86. Kardam, Nket. "Women and Development." Women, Gender, and World Politics: Perspectives, Policies, and Prospects ... : Braidotti, Rosi. "Women, the Environment and Sustainable Development: Emergence of the Theme and Different Views." Women, the ... defects in Structural Adjustment Programs (SAPS) and other development programs, but have also critically assessed the very ...
2 The case against development The area is an NSA and development would cause environmental concerns. (Section 3. 5) There are other alternatives – especially the recycling of construction materials. (Section 3.
1) 4. 3 The probable outcome There is no doubt that Harris could benefit from economic development, but what would become of it when the rock runs out or if demand falls? My personal feeling is that the rock should be left alone. The contamination of a pristine environment is too high a cost to pay. Clean Industry which could benefit from this resource would be a more appropriate development but due to the support of both central and local government, the islanders and Ian Wilson I feel planning permission will most likely be given. 4. 4 A suitable compromise If the development is to go ahead then I would like to see a second generation development.
(Section 3. 6) This would give the quarry a secondary use and could provide long term benefit to the community when it has reached the end of its productive life. The operation should also have strict regulations on extraction procedure to reduce, as far as possible, any environmental impact. The Western Islands Island Council should be ordered to develop a policy on mineral extraction and include plans to phase in other development as the quarry nears the end of its life. The last thing Harris needs is to be left in an economic vacuum when the rock runs out. REFERENCES Friends of the Earth, Super quarries versus sustainability, Recruitment leaflet Glasgow Herald, (17/6/93), Harris majority backs superquarry Glasgow Herald, (25/6/93), Isles’ lb 50 Million quarry finally given go ahead Glasgow Herald, (16/6/94), Quarry firm to pledge lb 100, 000 to Island trust Glasgow Herald, (30/9/94), Enterprise at odds with heritage Glasgow Herald, (20/10/94), First shots fired in quarry inquiry The Guardian, (8/11/94) Native chieftain brings magic of the stones across the Atlantic to help Hebrides see off threat to mince mountain into chippings, Page 6 Midwinter, A and Monaghan, (1990), The measurement and analysis of rural deprivation, Report for COSTA, February 1990 New Scientist, (1994), Rush for rock in the Highlands, 8/1/94 Royal Commission, (1994), Transport and the environment-18 th Report, HMSO, London The Scotsman, (18/7/93), Moving mountains to see how the land lies The Scotsman, (3/10/94), Drug firm says quarry could hit expansion The Scotsman, (10/10/94), The cruel dilemma for the people of Harris The Scotsman, (13/10/94), Island curbs on super quarry contract staff Scottish Field, (1993), Otter disruption, October 1993 SNH, (1994), Lingerbay press pack.
... he's sexy and he's dead." Hollywood heralded Morrison in 1990 when a decade-long quest ... wrought by the potent combination of sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll. Word Count: 2050Bibliography:Diggins, John ... club scene, the Doors initially performed blues and rock 'n' roll standards, in addition to material ... us as erotic politicians." (Prochnicky 46) A seminal rock figure, Morrison's dark good looks and overt ...