Quarry incinerator moves a step closer
PLANS to build an incinerator in the countryside outside Plymouth have taken another step forward.
The Environment Agency said it was about to publish a draft environmental permit for the proposed energy from waste plant at New England Quarry near Ivybridge.
The incinerator was one of two shortlisted to handle Plymouth's waste.
It was eventually beaten in a bidding war by MVV Environment Devonport, which is now building an incinerator at Weston Mill for the South West Devon Waste Partnership.
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Viridor Waste Management had already said it would push ahead with the incinerator next to the former New England Quarry regardless.
An incinerator requires planning permission plus an Environment Agency permit.
Devon County Council was due to consider a planning application from Viridor in April this year, but at the last minute the company asked for it to be deferred.
Meanwhile, Viridor has submitted the application for an environmental permit.
The Environment Agency said yesterday that it would publish a draft permit along with a draft decision document on Friday.
It said it was satisfied that the incinerator could be built and operated in a way that ensures a high level of protection to human health and the environment.
The publication of the draft decision marks the start of a five-week consultation, which will run until October 12.
Judy Proctor from the Environment Agency said: "This further consultation period allows us to check that nothing has changed since the original application and that nothing has been missed or overlooked in the draft permit before we make our final decision."
The draft decision document and draft permit will be available to view from Friday on the Agency's website at http://bit.ly/SntO7w and on the public registers at:
The Environment Agency, Sir John Moore House, Victoria Square, Bodmin, PL31 1EB
South Hams District Council, Follaton House, Plymouth Road, Totnes, TQ9 5NE
Plymouth City Council, Civic Centre, Royal Parade, Plymouth, PL1 2AA
Guidance is also available on the Environment Agency's website to help people respond to the consultation, or on the customer service line on 08708 506 506.
The agency is also planning to hold a public surgery at the Watermark Centre in Ivybridge on Thursday, October 4. Environment Agency staff will be there to help people understand how the draft decision has been reached and help them respond to the consultation if they wish to do so.
Viridor has also applied separately for an environmental permit to construct and operate a landfill site.
The company said: "We are also looking forward to receiving a final decision on the planning application for the plant, which is scheduled to be determined at Devon County Council's planning committee in October."
Charlotte Mills, spokeswoman for anti-incinerator group EcoIvy, said: "We are disappointed. We can't see sense in subjecting this beautiful environment to more pollution."
She said EcoIvy's lawyers and experts would study the draft permit and respond.
"We don't feel there is enough waste in Devon for one incinerator, let alone two. Viridor will have to import waste from outside the county."