A towering 400ft wind turbine will dominate Bradford's skyline if a company's bid to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions gets the green light.

Hailed as a 21st century landmark for the city, the giant £2 million turbine could be up and running by 2008 at Princes Soft Drinks in Weaverthorpe Road, Tong.

Visible from the M62, its tower would stand 262ft tall and the turbine's full height to the tip of the topmost rotating blade would be almost 400ft. It could in theory provide enough electricity to power half the properties in Holme Wood.

Today the project was welcomed by one councillor as an iconic symbol for the city, similar to Blackpool Tower, which stands 518ft, or The Angel of the North. The 2.3 megawatt turbine would be the biggest in the area, taller than its nearest neighbours at Haworth, Addingham and Ovenden Moor near Halifax.

The project has been shown to Bradford people at a series of road shows across the city.

Residents have studied posters and graphics at exhibitions at Weaverthorpe Retail Park, Holme Wood Library and Asda at Rooley Lane. If the plans are approved work could start on site next year.

A Princes' spokesman said: "This is an exciting project at a site which is a major employer in the region.

"We hope that our public consultation has demonstrated to people living nearby that this is a fantastic opportunity to secure power from a sustainable source at a time when all businesses should be reviewing their energy consumption.

"As a growing business with increasing power demands, Princes has investigated a number of ways of securing some of our future power requirements from alternative energy sources.

"We feel that the most cost-effective and environmentally-aware way of securing some of the company's future power needs is via our own dedicated wind turbine."

The Bradford factory employs more than 450 people and operates 24 hours a day.

Maslen Environmental Ltd, at Salts Mill, Saltaire, is preparing the planning application for the turbine. The company also drew up the public consultation exercise. It was carried out before a planning application is submitted to Bradford Council so that any comments and concerns can be addressed in the final proposals.

Steve Maslen, managing director of Maslen Environmental Ltd, said comments from residents were overwhelmingly positive.

They included: "Good for the planet;" "Will not be an eyesore;" "Better than a dirty, smelly power station" and "Good idea. Please use more to save the environment."

Mr Maslen said the turbine, which would operate round-the-clock, made "a little bit of noise, a sort of whooshing of the blades". But he said it was below existing background noise in the area. And he stressed that permitting the turbine would not spawn a forest of similar giants at the factory. "There is space on the site for one only," he said.

Mr Maslen said the turbine would prevent five and a half thousand tonnes of carbon dioxide being pumped into the air above Bradford every year from the factory.

Ward councillor John Ruding (Lab, Tong) welcomed the plan. He said: "I have had a look at the concept and spoken to the management of Princes. It is a very forward-looking company and is looking to reduce its carbon dioxide output by a third."

Coun Ruding said that, in the past, the Tong skyline was dominated by mill chimneys pumping out pollutants. The turbine represented the future for the city, he said.

"We hope people will see it as an iconic symbol for Bradford. It is about the future of the company and shows it is committed to the Bradford site."

Bradford Green Party Councillor David Ford (Heaton) said he "heartily applauded" the project. He said the climate of Bradford was well-suited to wind turbines.

"We are pushing the Council to look at alternative forms of energy generation.

"This sends out a message to it that it needs to change its own way of doing things and look at wind turbines and solar power," he said.

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