Plan for biomethane near Kippen plant given the green light

A plan to build a biomethane plant near Kippen has been given conditional approval by Stirling Council’s Planning and Regulation Panel.

Approved stock image
Approved stock image

Graham’s, The Family Dairy, are seeking to install the facility on a 1.9 hectare site north east of Mains of Boquhan as part of their plans to achieve net zero by 2035.

The proposal would see dairy and agricultural waste from three of Graham’s sites broken down through an anaerobic digestion *process to produce biomethane and digestate – a nutrient-rich substance.

The biomethane would provide a renewable source of heat for soft cheese production and a fuel replacement for Heavy Goods Vehicles, while the digestate would be used on an adjoining farm owned in place of fossil fuel derived fertiliser.

The development includes digester tanks, a plant room and a number of other structures, including absorption towers, a flare and a digestate store surrounded by a 3m high wall.

Alterations would also be made to the junction where the existing road meets the A811.

In a report submitted to the Planning Panel, Council Officers stated that the proposal complies with Stirling’s Local Development Plan.

Following a hearing at Tuesday's (30 Aug) meeting, in which objectors spoke, the application was approved, subject to a number of conditions.

These included: a pre-construction noise impact assessment, limits on when HGVs can move at the site, a restriction of the operation of the flare stack to a maximum of 10 minutes per month, a road safety audit and the approval of management plans relating to lighting, noise, dust and the environment.

A total of 97 objections were lodged about the application, including from Kippen and Gargunnock Community Councils, out of 103 comments received. These were considered when applying the conditions. 

Questions were asked by the panel over SEPA’s regulatory responsibilities, in relation to the environmental impact of the plant. Responses were considered in determining the application.

A recording of the meeting can be viewed here:

To read the report and download the agenda papers, follow this link:

*The anaerobic digestion process sees biodegradable material, including dairy by-products and manure, broken down by naturally occurring microorganisms in the absence of oxygen to produce biogas and digestate. The biogas (55% methane and 45% carbon dioxide) is then cleaned through water washing resulting in 98% methane.