Here are 8 reasons why you should object:
- The incinerator will cause harm to the landscape, the environment and the wider economy. This harm cannot be mitigated by the proposed measures, especially the planned works to Allerton Park which will benefit one individual. If approved the incinerator will reduce re-cycling: the need to feed the incinerator will discourage re-cycling.
- Need is not demonstrated and the plant is too big: it is designed to burn 320,000 tonnes of waste a year – much more than North Yorkshire currently produces. It’ll be too big in future, because volumes of waste are going down as re-cycling increases and packaging is reduced.
- The scheme is contrary to policies at local, regional and national levels. The Government Waste Review (2011) states that Energy from Waste (incineration) has a place, but only for genuinely residual waste that cannot be recycled. The aim is to get the most out of waste, not the most waste into incineration.
- The case for a single site is not made. The council’s own public consultation reveals residents would prefer to have smaller local facilities – including at Allerton Park – to reduce the number of lorries on the roads. But the incinerator proposal would put many tens of thousands of lorries on to our roads bringing in waste from all over the county. As well as adding to traffic congestion and to road deaths and injuries, lorry fumes will add to pollution and increase our carbon footprint. And there’s nothing nearby that could make use of heat from the plant.
- It will have big climate change impacts: Incineration is one of the worst performing methods for waste disposal when carbon dioxide costs are calculated. Electricity-only incinerators produce 33% more fossil fuel derived CO2 per unit energy generated than a gas fired power station. By 2020, with increases in recycling and improved technology, these incinerators will be 78% worse than new gas power stations.
- No approved Waste Strategy exists: The County lacks a Core Minerals and Waste Strategy against which this application can be assessed. The Joint Municipal Waste Strategy is now outdated and its planned update and public consultation in 2010/11 has not happened.
- It ignores the region: Recent approval has been given to new waste management facilities in Ferrybridge (>800,000 tonnes pa) and Teesside, massively increasing waste processing capacity in the region. Another incinerator at Allerton Park makes no sense.
- Visual Impact: Despite the height of the main incinerator chimney stack being reduced to 70m from earlier designs, this chimney, together with the surrounding high buildings, will dominate the landscape for many miles around and will constitute a significant visual intrusion on the immediate and wider countryside area. This is the gateway to Yorkshire and will be the first you see when entering this county, which relies on tourism.
NYCC has backed this scheme in principle because it failed to develop a better plan for meeting targets to reduce landfill. Now the council will be judge and jury on the planning application, unless we can get the planning application ‘called in’ and decided at a public inquiry.