Fight is on to stop new incinerator plan

Reporter:

Matt Jones

CAMPAIGNERS have vowed to fight plans, which could see an incinerator built on Deeside amid fears over health.

Residents and community leaders met in Connah’s Quay on Friday as the consultation over the Welsh Government’s £142.7 million North Wales Residual Waste Treatment Project (NWRWTP) continues.

No decision on the type of technology or a site to service the facility, which will deal with residual waste from Flintshire, Denbighshire, Anglesey, Gwynedd and Conwy, has been made.

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

Community leaders have raised fears over possible links between infant mortality rates and incinerators.

Connah’s Quay councillor Aaron Shotton led the campaign launched by the town council.

He said: “We are looking to arrange public meetings, invite environmental campaigners and draw upon expert advice. There are similar campaigns going on across Wales and we hope to join forces. It is not just about Deeside.”

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) will review its advice on incinerators in light of new substantial research on the health effects.

Cllr Shotton said the three companies shortlisted to carry out the project are experts in incineration – prompting fears an incinerator will be the technology of choice.

He said: “It is sensible to wait for the outcome of the HPA study before any contracts are signed. An incinerator on Deeside is a real and present danger.

“We have to do all we can. If North Wales leaders will not draw back on this we have got to ask the Welsh Government to intervene.”

Connah’s Quay resident Janet Dunbar, who attended the launch with granddaughter Chloe, said: “Our biggest concern is for the youngsters in the area. The children are the future, not just here but everywhere, and to be possibly putting their future at risk is not the right thing to do.”

Town councillor Pat Attridge added: “I’m concerned about my grandchildren, my great-grandchildren and the children of Connah’s Quay. I have been fortunate to have healthy children, but with the health concerns around incinerators it worries me to death.

“We will fight it to the end. The people I have spoken to are very worried. My grandson Jake is the sixth generation of our family in the area and I want that to continue.”

A spokesman said for the project said:  “The five partner authorities in the partnership are committed to delivering the Welsh Government’s waste strategy and the targets set within it, including increasing recycling, however this still leaves a small proportion that will require treatment in an alternative method to landfill.

“The North Wales Residual Waste Treatment Project is aimed at securing the most environmentally and economically beneficial service for the residents of North Wales through procuring the latest and most proven waste treatment technology.

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

See full story in the Leader

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