A POWER plant could generate up to 4 megawatts (MW) of electrical power to parts of Monmouth if approved by local authority planners.

The outline planning application seeks to build a gas-powered combined heat and power (CHP) plant in the north-eastern corner of the Valley Enterprise Park in Hadnock Road.

The plant would be 300 square metres and would include a slimline chimney, through which emissions would be discharged, no higher than 21 metres high.

It would aim to take advantage of a “rare” merging of gas and electrical grid connections to to provide enough energy to benefit nearby buildings such as the The Grange preparatory school, sports club and industrial offices.

“This is therefore a very sustainable facility helping to meet government targets on energy efficiency,” a statement from the applicant reads.

It could also help to power a new 60-bedroom hotel and spa which has been earmarked to be built on the same industrial estate.

The application had been given the green light by planners in October 2016 but, due to concerns of flooding risks, it remains in the hands of Welsh Ministers after it was called in.

A decision on the development is expected next month.

An energy centre had been included in the hotel and spa application and council officers had offered no objections to its construction.

But the new application has been entered in case the ambitious tourism development is refused.

Similar concerns over flooding have been voiced regarding the new energy plant, as it too would be located on the same flood plain that is at risk of suffering a one in a 100-year flood of the nearby River Wye.

However it has been deemed as “less vulnerable” by experts, and would be built three metres above ground level to combat potential flooding.

In a pre-application report, council officers had deemed the new application “acceptable” so long as the applicants provide evidence that the development would not have too much of an adverse impact on its surroundings.

It read: “There have been concerns raised regarding the energy centre outlining that it would be excessive in scale and would create additional emissions in the area.

“The proposed development would have to evidence that the development would not harm any party’s health or the natural environment and this evidence and potential mitigation would have to be agreed by the council’s environmental health officer.”