Support our Nation today - please donate here

Date set for key meeting over future of controversial hydrogen project

07 Apr 2024 3 minute read
Hybont Protestors. Credit: Lewis Smith, LDRS

Lewis Smith, local democracy reporter

A date has been set for a special meeting to decide the future of a controversial hydrogen production project.

The project could see a hydrogen powered plant built by developers Marubeni Europower Ltd on Brynmenyn industrial estate, if approved this year.

If given the go-ahead at a special meeting set for April 29, they would include a hydrogen production facility with electrolysers that generate hydrogen from electrical power, along with hydrogen storage, and a hydrogen refuelling station. It would also include a solar farm site nearby.

The plans have led to a major backlash from some residents, with protests held outside the council’s offices because of what they said was a lack of clarity, and safety concerns with the facility’s proximity to local housing in the village of Bryncethin.

It also comes just weeks after the authority approved a transfer of “surplus land” near Bryncethin to the Corporate Joint Committee of Cardiff Capital Region, who have shown interest in becoming a “key partner” to the project.


The scale of opposition to the proposals means the meeting will include a site visit by members, before they return to the council chambers in Bridgend to hear representations from councillors, officers, and members of the public- with expectations that there could be further protests held.

However, officers noted that the decision process itself could also have added complications, as it could still be called in by the Welsh Government, taking control out of the local authority’s hands altogether.

Members heard how ministers had issued a holding direction over the plans, which means as it stands, unless this direction is removed, Bridgend Council will only have powers to reject the plans but not to approve.

They added that even if the direction was removed in time for them to make a full decision at the meeting, it could still be over-ruled by Welsh Government ministers at a later date.

Uncertain circumstances

Cllr Simon Griffiths said he struggled to see the point of the meeting given the uncertain circumstances, and asked officers if it was right that they should hold it at this time.

Officers accepted that the process was not straight forward, and responded by saying that the meeting would still to go-ahead as members would still need to express what they would be minded to do with the complicated plans.

The meeting, which is the latest turn in a long running saga over the proposed facility, will now be held on April 29, with an accompanying paper requesting approvals for refurbishment works at Porthcawl’s popular Grand Pavilion.

Support our Nation today

For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.

Notify of
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 month ago

I need to tap up Bridgend Council for a sure fire scheme I have, if I link a load of newtons cradles together I should get perpetual motion…….all I need is a mark backer to take the financial hit for me.

After all, its my taxes that are getting hiked by 9% to pay for this.

Our Supporters

All information provided to Nation.Cymru will be handled sensitively and within the boundaries of the Data Protection Act 2018.