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Final part of North York Moors potash mine plan approved

Cranes at Teesport Image copyright Geograph / Mick Garratt
Image caption The harbour facilities for the mine will be built at docks on Teesside

The final part of a £2.4bn potash mine development on the North York Moors has been given approval.

The developer Sirius Minerals said the go ahead had been given by the government for the port facilities at Teesside docks.

It will be linked to the mine by a 23-mile (37km) long tunnel.

The company said the mining operation would create more than 1,000 jobs, but opponents fear it will damage the landscape and wildlife.

Chris Fraser, managing director and CEO of Sirius Minerals, said he was "delighted to have secured this final approval for the project".

"Our team is currently actively engaged in the financing phase of the project and I look forward to providing further updates in due course," he added.

'Stringent conditions'

Plans include building a minehead at Dove's Nest Farm, Sneaton, with shafts 4,921ft (1,500m) deep.

Potash is used in fertilizer and mining is expected to begin in 2021. The company aims to initially produce 10 million tonnes of fertilizer per annum, rising to 20 million tonnes subject to council agreement.

Planning approval for the mine was granted by the North York Moors National Park Authority in June 2015 with "stringent conditions" for its construction and working.

The Campaign for National Parks said the mine was "completely incompatible with national park purposes" and the promised economic benefits would "never justify the huge damage" to the area's landscape, wildlife and tourism.

Image copyright Sirius Minerals
Image caption The tunnel, underneath the North York Moors national park, heads north west to Teesside

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