Planned fuel storage tank project near Innisfail stirs debate
Landowners north of Calgary argue the 20 fuel silos should be placed somewhere else
Some landowners 120 kilometres north of Calgary are trying to stop a plan to build a commercial farm fuel storage tank facility in their area.
Federated Cooperatives Ltd., the business behind the proposal for just north of Innisfail, said it’s a matter of trying to keep up with demand.
Local landowner Steve Turner said residents were not properly consulted before the plan was green-lighted by Red Deer County.
The project will lower property values because it’s too close to homes, he said.
"There's nothing there right now, and now you want to drop 20 silos in my front yard?" Turner said.
"There's a perfectly good spot, three kilometres down the road, just outside of Innisfail, ideal for this location, in an industrial area," he added.
Landowner Michael McLetchie is also opposed to the project.
"I think the county has just arrogantly refused to listen to the people here," he said.
But according to Red Deer County Mayor Jim Wood, the public was consulted, the land is properly zoned and safety precautions will be taken.
"All our farmers need fuel, our industry needs fuel, somewhere this fuel needs to be stored, and I felt it was an appropriate location," he said.
While the co-op prepares a final development plan, some opponents are still hoping for a compromise. Others said they're now exploring legal options.