‘Have your say on plans for waste incinerator’

Reporter:

Matt Jones

RESIDENTS are being urged to have their say on controversial plans which could see an incinerator built on Deeside.

A consultation is being launched today into the Welsh Government’s £142.7 million North Wales Residual Waste Treatment Project (NWRWTP) set up to manage waste across five councils in the region.

The prospects of an incinerator on Deeside have been described as a “real threat”.

An outline business case presented by project bosses caused anger when it gave Deeside Industrial Estate as the only example of a possible location for an incinerator to handle waste which cannot be recycled.

Now people in Flintshire, Denbighshire, Anglesey, Gwynedd and Conwy are being asked for their views on the waste treatment facility.

Steffan Owen, project manager for NWRWTP, said: “We have created a leaflet and want to inform people about the project.

“There are questions in the leaflet and the answers given will inform the direction in which we proceed.”

Questions include asking people for their views on recycling, on transporting waste by rail and from how far away the new facility should take waste.

Connah’s Quay Central councillor Aaron Shotton said the Health Protection Agency was researching the link between infant mortality and incinerator sites in England.

He said: “Given the health effects have not been disproved, I would still urge Flintshire Council to rule out incineration and rule out Deeside as an option.

“The people of Deeside do not want this and it is important they understand an incinerator on Deeside is a very real threat.

“There is a real and present danger,” and Cllr Shotton urged residents to join a campaign against a site in Deeside.

Residents are also asked for their views on benefits the project could bring to the area, such as employment opportunities and the ability to use heat from treating the waste as a power source.

Anxious councillors opposed to an incinerator on Deeside are urging people to fill in the questionnaire.

Connah’s Quay councillor Bernie Attridge said: “I’m entirely opposed to an incinerator on Deeside and I will campaign against it.

“I was always told by officers taking this project forward they were energy neutral, but the shortlisted three all specialise in getting energy from waste and that means incinerators.

“I know a decision has not been made yet but the longer this process goes on the more concerned I am for Deeside.”

But project bosses insist Deeside is not confirmed as the definite site. “The document had to name a potential site and potential technology,” said Mr Owen.

“We put Deeside in because it’s a potential site.”

Mr Owen’s colleague John Twitchen said: “We couldn’t just name a site in make
believe, it had to be suitable.

“The land is owned by Flintshire Council and it is also in the development plan for suitable development.

“What might be built and where it might be built is not yet determined.”

Mr Owen said bidders are welcome to submit other potential sites in their plans.

The project team has also identified a potential site in Anglesey and is in talks with Anglesey Aluminium to finalise an agreement to list their land as a possible location.

Consultation leaflets are available from today and feedback can also be given at www.nwrwtp.org.

Details of drop in sessions for the public, planned for later this summer, are still to be confirmed.

l What do you think about the project? Have your say below.

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