PLANS to convert a barn into holiday accommodation near Carno have been approved.
But councillors will be urging environment body Natural Resources Wales (NRW) to physically inspect water courses at the site, before awarding and environment permit.
An application by Corrine Adlington to convert an existing barn into five holiday let units, the change of use of an agricultural building to a communal recreational area and all associated works at Glanhanog Isaf Barns, Carno was discussed by Powys County Council’s planning committee on 3 February .
The application had been brought in front of the committee after being “called in” by local councillor, Les George.
During the consultation process Carno community council had objected to the application on the grounds of highways safety and that the site is also prone to flooding.
The application, which had been recommended for approval by Powys planning officers.
This issues under discussion by the committee entered around a wastewater discharge plant.
This had been approved in the past and needed upgrading to take the extra capacity for the holiday lets.
Cllr Elwyn Vaughan said: “What we have seen in Powys is huge concern about water pollution, every week we see articles about concerns with the Wye.
“What we have here is a water treatment facility actually located in the brook.”
He added that a recent report started that the number of Otters in our rivers are down by 22 per cent due to pollution.
Cllr Vaughan said: “The Severn is not polluted yet, but if we allow facilities to be so close to water, it’s only a matter of time before that situation arises.
“It defies logic to have a facility like this, and I emphasise, in the brook.”
He added that the report had officers sating there were risks that the facility would flood, and Cllr Vaughan had pictures showing this.
Cllr Vaughan told the committee that “we are asking for problems in the future” unless issues that can lead to pollution are better managed.
Cllr Gwilym Williams added that it “beggars’ belief” where the discharge plant had been built.
Planning officer Luke Jones told the committee that both NRW and the Powys environmental health department had been consulted and not raised objects.
He explained that NRW had said that the applicant would still need an environment permit to deal with the foul water.
Cllr David Selby wondered if asking NRW officers to visit the site before they decide an environment permit application could be added as a planning permission condition?
Committee solicitor, Colin Edwards thought there would not “be anything wrong with” adding that recommendation.
A vote to approve the application along with the extra advice that NRW send someone onsite was put to a vote.
The application was passed, with 13 councillors voting for it and four against.