Residents from a Mid Ulster village have expressed fears that ambitious plans to open a minerals quarry will cause upheaval and significantly add to noise and dust pollution in the area.
SafeRock Minerals, a fertiliser manufacturing company, has purchased agricultural land on the Cornamaddy Road, Pomeroy, and is now in the process of a submitting plans to convert it into a quarry.
As part of the planning process, the company has organised a public consultation meeting at the Rowntree Centre in Pomeroy this Thursday at 7.30pm.
The company, which owns the natural mineral resource branded as SafeRock Agri, said it is keen to engage in discussion with local residents, businesses and community organisations, and gather their perspectives on their plans.
However, residents have warned that the village is ‘sleepwalking’ into ‘an environmental nightmare’.
A landowner in the area has warned that the quarry could turn into ‘a super-mine’, extracting tonnes of sediment each day.
He called on concerned residents to attend the meeting and seek answers to their environmental fears.
The company manufacture SafeRock agri, a fertiliser manufactured from sedimentary deposits left behind on ancient seabeds and which have been discovered on the surface at sites in Northern Ireland.
The sediment is high in trace element minerals, a vital ingredient for the fertiliser and cosmetics industry.
At Thursday’s public consultation meeting, visitors will be invited to ask questions about the prospective quarry operations on Cornamaddy Road, Pomeroy.
Attendees will also have the opportunity to communicate directly with planning professionals involved in the application.
It is believed that the Mid Ulster Council’s planning department will have the final say on whether or not to approve the ambitious plans.