Pioneering technology which it is claimed will turn rubbish into plastic was last night given the go-ahead by West Norfolk council.

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But Norfolk County Council insisted there was still a long way to go before it could be considered a serious alternative to its proposed incinerator.

At last night’s full council meeting, West Norfolk voted to enter into a formal contract with Material Works, the consortium behind a new process which turns “black bag” waste into an inert building material.

After the meeting Brian Long, the council’s deputy leader, said: “The black bin waste scheme has been approved unanimously, with a very slight ammendment.

“I think it shows very much that there are alternatives out there in terms of how we deal with our waste. This obviously moves this alternative forward.”

Mr Long added the “slight ammendment” was that other plants would have to be built if other councils in Norfolk decided to use Material Works’s technology to comply with the proximity principle, that waste should be dealt with as closely as possible to the community which generates it.

Material Works said it was in the final stages of choosing a site for a plant which would be operational in two years’ time and create up to 300 jobs.

It said at £55 a tonne, the cost of processing the waste through its system was cheaper than both incineration or landfill.

But Bill Borrett, Norfolk County Council’s cabinet member for environment and waste said: “They say it might be cheaper if everything works, if everything comes out how they want.

“The reason they can sign that tonight is that there are so many other caveats in there - if the process works, if they get an environmental permit, if they can find a site, if Material Works can find the necessary finance, it might work out at £55 a tonne.”

Mr Borrett said in February, the county council would be launching a new initiative to attract new operators into the waste industry.

Returning to Material Works’s process, he said: “If it’s a good idea and it does what it says on the tin, I’d want it for the people of Norfolk.

“I wish them well, there’s a million tonnes of waste out there in Norfolk and the Saddlebow proposals will only deal with 170,000 tonnes of it.”

Material Works’s managing director, Robert Billson, said: “Now that the contract has been ratified by all the members of the borough council, we shall be able to finalise the acquisition of the site to complete the construction of the new local facility where the material will be processed.

“We currently have a number of options for sites, which have been shortlisted and we will begin the detailed planning consultation process immediately.”

Mr Billson said Material Works also planned to build a full-scale demonstrator plant for their new process, which was called Saltus.

He said it was a process which combined residual waste material with polymers to create a compound which could be used to make parts for building and construction products.

“King’s Lynn and West Norfolk will be on target to achieve a recycling rate in excess of 90pc, which will be a landmark achievement and sets a new standard for other councils all over the country.”

Norfolk County Council gave the incinerator planning permission in July. But the decision was called in by Communities secretary Eric Pickles, meaning there will now be a full public inquiry, which is due to start on February 26.

Hundreds walked out of a pre-inquiry meeting on Wednesday, because the government inspector chairing it could not hear them or be heard because of lack of microphones.

Last night it also emerged that Norfolk County Council had agreed to help meet Cory Wheelabrator’s costs of representing itself at the public inquiry, as well as its own.

The disclosure came days after the council said it did not yet know how much its own costs would be. Mr Borrett said: “As you are aware it is the Government who has called in this application for examination.

“We welcome its independent look at the process, and the county council and Cory Wheelabrator, as its contractor working on its behalf, have to meet the necessary costs involved.

“The split is as follows, Cory Wheelabrator will meet their costs up to an agreed five figure sum with the County Council meeting 90pc of the rest above that.”

15 comments

  • CTompkinson - HILARIOUS, that's one of the funniest comments I've read for ages!

    Report this comment

    Norfolk and Good

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • I don't see why, as one of the few counties in the UK with a coastline, we can't ship all of our waste out into the depths of the North Sea and dispose of it there. I've heard a few people talking about this is a viable option now. All we need to do is build a huge metal chute from a converted oil rig down into the deep. We simply tip all of the waste down the chute and when it falls deep enough it will be crushed by the immense pressure of the water and therefore desposes of our rubbish forever. This method has zero impact on our environment. With regards to recycling, this option also has a superb benefit... any plastics or cardboard that is not crushed by the sea will float back to the top. We can then send people out in boats to pick up the floating recycled waste... they can sail back to the docks and drive this waste to the recycle centre and dispose of it free of charge.

    Report this comment

    CTomkinson

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • I don't see why, as one of the few counties in the UK with a coastline, we can't ship all of our waste out into the depths of the North Sea and dispose of it there. I've heard a few people talking about this is a viable option now. All we need to do is build a huge metal chute from a converted oil rig down into the deep. We simply tip all of the waste down the chute and when it falls deep enough it will be crushed by the immense pressure of the water and therefore desposes of our rubbish forever. This method has zero impact on our environment. With regards to recycling, this option also has a superb benefit... any plastics or cardboard that is not crushed by the sea will float back to the top. We can then send people out in boats to pick up the floating recycled waste... they can sail back to the docks and drive this waste to the recycle centre and dispose of it free of charge.

    Report this comment

    CTomkinson

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • Acenditcantu were you out of the country when material works- Duratrust held a demonstration at the Eco centre Swaffham last year. Invites to their works at Chester. Of course your mates in the county hall did not turn up but went on a jolly to Cory Wheelabrators head office in Boston USA. This was on a fact finding mission but did not inform County Hall that Cory Wheelabrator have fines as long as your arm for pollution and fraud.

    Report this comment

    Knee deep In Toxic ash

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • There should have been a proper demonstration of this unproven technology BEFORE West Norfolk signed up to it. They are so blinkered by their opposition to the incinerator that they will do anything to try and put obstacles in its way. However, PROVEN technology that can recycle waste AND find an outlet for the product may be a better way than burning the waste. It's time to take the politics and misinformation out of the incinerator debate and look at the TRUE facts. It is my belief that many of those who voted against the incinerator were given, at the best, misleading information and at the worst told outright untruths about its effects. The opponents, if they are to maintain their credibility, MUST stick to the absolute facts and not try and embellish them. Good luck to your NO campaign but for goodness sake keep it honest.

    Report this comment

    Norfolk Lad

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • It is a disgrace that NCC are prepared to use taxpayers money to fight the Norfolk taxpayer. We will fight you at the election box you would rather support Wheelabrator which has hundreds and hundreds of violations against them than protect the children who would have to breathe these poisons in every day and when they are sleeping in their beds at night. The whole lot of you make me sick. We will refuse to send our children to school in South Lynn the school is in direct firing line near the site the stinking Wheelabrator waste incinerator is proposed on. You are all a utter disgrace you should all resign. How can any decent conservative support this council. 65.516 people said NO.

    Report this comment

    Jack

    Saturday, December 1, 2012

  • So it is true that Norfolk taxpayers are paying for Cory Wheelabrators consultants to fight the 65.000 Norfolk taxpayers who said no, the real figure being much higher as we were never asked. Kings Lynn Borough council is showing NCC what is possible and what should have happened during the last 15 years, NCC knew full well when the EU introduces land fill charges and they also knew of the many different recycling methods available, modern jobs in cutting edge technologies, but they reneged their contract with us and their responsibilities, not to speak of of sitting on their hands. 13% of Germany's raw material needs comes from recycling, a figure of 6-10 billion per year. NCC solution is unsustainable and will burn real jobs.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • Jack I totally agree with you and what makes it worse for the lame Tory County Councillors in West Norfolk that hid behind Murphy’s apron. The upsurge in Independent and UKIP votes recently will give them a rude awakening in May. These are the same councillors that let Cory Wheelabrator into County Hall with open arms but did not lift a finger for the folks that voted them in. Kick them in the Ballots.

    Report this comment

    Knee deep In Toxic ash

    Saturday, December 1, 2012

  • CTomkinson You should get a job with the council, you are clearly wasted wherever you are now!!

    Report this comment

    windup

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • CT must take up a job as comedian. More seriously the burning of any plastized polymers produces toxic 'hard gases' and un-usable poly-molecle residle. There is no 'magic' use for these oil based polymers. It is difficult and expensive to randomly mix with building materials. Only expensive separation can re-string pure polymers..

    Report this comment

    Dave01

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • I don't see why, as one of the few counties in the UK with a coastline, we can't ship all of our waste out into the depths of the North Sea and dispose of it there. I've heard a few people talking about this is a viable option now. All we need to do is build a huge metal chute from a converted oil rig down into the deep. We simply tip all of the waste down the chute and when it falls deep enough it will be crushed by the immense pressure of the water and therefore desposes of our rubbish forever. This method has zero impact on our environment. With regards to recycling, this option also has a superb benefit... any plastics or cardboard that is not crushed by the sea will float back to the top. We can then send people out in boats to pick up the floating recycled waste... they can sail back to the docks and drive this waste to the recycle centre and dispose of it free of charge.

    Report this comment

    CTomkinson

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • Ctomkinson is hilariously silly. I also heard a suggestion that rubbish should be sent in a rocket up into outer space. Mind you that was from a neighbour's eight year old son. Perhaps Ctomkinson is of a similar age! More seriously I have had reports back from those who attended the meeting and they were struck at how shifty the QCs for County and for Cory were when asked if County were forking out for Cory's representation. The planning chap from the government said he didn't want to see public money wasted. Well I've got news for you mate, we are the public, it's our money and we are beyond angry that these councillors are wasting our money in this way. Absolutely outrageous.

    Report this comment

    alecto

    Friday, November 30, 2012

  • Where's Murphy, why have we got the idiot Borrett calling himself 'Acting Leader' when no one has explained where our dear leader is - suspended or sick?

    Report this comment

    Honest John

    Wednesday, December 5, 2012

  • Honest John good question. I suspect they have now realised Derrick Murphy has been the best anti-incinerator campaigner by just opening his mouth. He held centre stage on Radio Norfolk until Kevin Gate. Is there another low profile backroom inquiry going on as week write! It may be he is getting ready for his retirement as residents of Freebridge ward may no vote him back in power. I totally blame NCC for incinerator fiasco knowing all Norfolk rejected it. They were influenced by the brash manner of Derrick enforcer but he did not come up with the goods so he is now surplus to requirements. One other reason could be to keep Derrick quiet while the planning inspector does his stuff and again not to embarrass NCCs credibility even if they previously had any.

    Report this comment

    batemansusan

    Thursday, December 6, 2012

  • So it is true that Norfolk taxpayers are paying for Cory Wheelabrators consultants to fight the 65.000 Norfolk taxpayers who said no, the real figure being much higher as we were never asked. Kings Lynn Borough council is showing NCC what is possible and what should have happened during the last 15 years, NCC knew full well when the EU introduces land fill charges and they also knew of the many different recycling methods available, modern jobs in cutting edge technologies, but they reneged their contract with us and their responsibilities, not to speak of of sitting on their hands. 13% of Germany's raw material needs comes from recycling, a figure of 6-10 billion per year. NCC solution is unsustainable and will burn real jobs.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Friday, November 30, 2012

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