Opponents to the proposed incinerator in King’s Lynn have accused county council leaders of being on the brink of doing the people of Norfolk “a serious misjustice” for pushing ahead with the waste plant rather than considering alternatives.

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Norfolk County Council voted in June to give planning permission for the plant at Saddlebow, but communities secretary Eric Pickles’s office announced the decision was being called in, meaning there will be a full public inquiry.

At a meeting of the full county council yesterday, a motion was put forward which called for the authority to use the period leading up to that inquiry in January to look at alternatives to the plant.

West Norfolk council is poised to sign a contract with a rival consortium called Material Works to turn its waste into an inert plastic used in the building industry instead. It claims that the process would be cheaper, more environmentally-friendly and create 200 jobs at an as yet unannounced site.

Councillors have been recommended to agree to enter into contract with Duratrust to begin dealing with the borough’s black bin waste from April 2014 when they meet on Thursday night.

As well as decrying the “democratic deficit” which led to the decision to award the contract to run the incinerator to Anglo-American consortium Cory Wheelabrator, the motion had called for the county council to sign a confidentiality clause which would have allowed them to be fully briefed on the details of West Norfolk’s alternative.

But the Conservative-controlled council rejected the motion, which was put forward by their former colleague John Dobson, county councillor for the Dersingham division, who was expelled by the Tories in the summer.

Brian Long, Conservative county councillor for King’s Lynn North and Central division and deputy leader of West Norfolk Council, had said in support of the motion: “This council does need to recognise that there are many ways to deal with waste. I see this an opportunity between now and the secretary of state decision.

“I am not a gambling man, so I don’t know if the chances with that inquiry are 50/50 or 75/25 on one side or the other. I have no idea how it will pan out.

“But if it pans out that it is not acceptable in planning terms then we have a problem. If we sit in this chamber and do not explore any alternatives we will do the people of Norfolk a serious misjustice.”

Paul Morse, former leader of the opposition Liberal Democrat group, said: “The way the cabinet has handled this issue has shown the cabinet at its very worst, with its win at all costs mentality.”

But Bill Borrett, cabinet member for environment and deputy leader at County Hall, said he had heard “a lot of rubbish” during the debate.

He said the decision making process had all followed the county council constitution, there had been two judicial review attempts which had found no problem with the procedure and that the incinerator was for the good of Norfolk as a whole.

But he said he welcomed West Norfolk’s attempt to find other ways of dealing with waste. He said: “There are lots of solutions, which is why the proposed plant is not for all of Norfolk’s waste. It is for 170,000 tonnes out of million tonnes a year and will save £8m a year and maybe more.

“The council is keen to look at innovative ways of dealing with waste. The incinerator is part of the solution, but not the solution. I’d like to see recycling going up an awful lot.”

Mr Borrett said he was keen to see the details of the West Norfolk alternative and said, with the county council the statutory waste disposal authority, the borough council had no power to withhold the confidential information.

Mr Dobson said, if that was the case, officers from both councils should sit down and work out a solution so the county could be “appraised of the technological details of the proposal”.

The council rejected the motion by 41 votes to 23 in favour, with four abstentions.

Norfolk County Council awarded the contract to build and operate the incinerator last year.

It said the plant was needed to prevent the county’s waste having to go to landfill, which would save taxpayers millions of pounds a year.

But campaigners claim there are health risks and there are cheaper and more environmentally-friendly methods of recycling our waste. More than 65,000 people voted against the plant in a poll organised by West Norfolk council.

17 comments

  • EDP why have you removed comments on one of the most important meetings in Norfolks history. 400 people at pre inquiry meeting at Lynn Sport King's Lynn and you have decided they are not good enough to make comments. Norfolk people in your eyes are to be ignored just like NCC ignored us. I don't know who is worse NCC Wheelabrator or you. Why are you constantly hiding the truth ? If Wheelabrator get their foot in the door who will buy your rag then !

    Report this comment

    Jack

    Wednesday, November 28, 2012

  • there may be delay, two hours days or weeks, before it appears, but there's no need to resubmit it. we shall see.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Most people turn out for the crowd pleasing day but afterwards they dwindle down to nothing. This will be no different.

    Report this comment

    Dickens

    Wednesday, November 28, 2012

  • censoring gnats of the EDP, do you really think that people will believe you that these few comments are the reality?

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Cllr. Borrett has, by NCC's decision to ignore their given mandate and replace it with incineration, broken the contract and hence, in my view, NCC and cllr. Borrett are not in charge of anything but their bully boy cabinet. The work done by the Kings Lynn Borough council, i.e. alternatives to burning resources, which mean modern technology and the jobs that come with it, should have been done by NCC, who has failed, since it encountered opposition to these plans, to work on a plan B. NCC ordered a study into land fill mining in 2006, but failing political will by both major parties to establish a modern recycling industry and require companies to reuse recyclables, NCC failed to alleviate their impending landfill deadline and did nothing.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • At election time who will be voting for these crooks that could not give a toss about peoples health or environment.

    Report this comment

    Jack

    Wednesday, November 28, 2012

  • It said the plant was needed to prevent the county’s waste having to go to landfill, which would save taxpayers millions of pounds a year. So where is the toxic and hazardous Commercial and Industrial waste,in the form of LETHAL ASH. Full of Heavy Metals leaching into the ground water, The Environment Agency - Groundwater directive Aim to protect groundwater from pollution by controlling discharges and disposals of certain dangerous substances to groundwater. People all over the world rely on the groundwater,if you bore a hole 100 feet down you would be able to drink that water,if The Environment Agency do their job

    Report this comment

    LFB

    Wednesday, November 28, 2012

  • Mr Borrett says he is keen to see the details of the West Norfolk alternative and that the borough council had no power to withhold the confidential information. How can he insinuate that NCC are being kept in the dark by WNBC when there was an open day at the council offices so that anyone - yes, anyone - could go along and look at the technology. Norwich isn't a million miles away (not in terms of mileage anyway!) so why didn't he come? Could it be that he's not really interested?

    Report this comment

    Sandy.L

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Why is the EDP under the impression that the meeting yesterday was somehow private and secret? It was not. The procedures and deliberations of that meeting and all the days of the inquiry will be fuly open to any member of the public who wishes to attend and those wish to comment. So the EDP's decision to wipe off al the comment is, on the face of it, strange. But perhaps there is something or someone else influencing this decision, not good journalism and editorship. Whilst I dont wish to teach my grandmother to suck eggs the name of the inquiry is "Public Inquiry" and I think that description may give a tiny weeny clue to those who have mastered the ability to speak English.

    Report this comment

    alecto

    Thursday, November 29, 2012

  • Cllr. Borrett has, by NCC's decision to ignore their given mandate and replace it with incineration, broken the contract and hence, in my view, NCC and cllr. Borrett are not in charge of anything but their bully boy cabinet. The work done by the Kings Lynn Borough council, i.e. alternatives to burning resources, which mean modern technology and the jobs that come with it, should have been done by NCC, who has reneged, since it encountered opposition to these plans, to work on a plan B. NCC ordered a study into land fill mining in 2006, but failing political will by both major parties to establish a modern recycling industry and require companies to reuse recyclables, NCC failed to alleviate their impending landfill deadline and did nothing.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Why is the EDP under the impression that the meeting yesterday was somehow private and secret? It was not. The procedures and deliberations of that meeting and all the days of the inquiry will be fuly open to any member of the public who wishes to attend and those wish to comment. So the EDP's decision to wipe off al the comment is, on the face of it, strange. But perhaps there is something or someone else influencing this decision, not good journalism and editorship. Whilst I dont wish to teach my grandmother to suck eggs the name of the inquiry is "Public Inquiry" and I think that description may give a tiny weeny clue to those who have mastered the ability to speak English.

    Report this comment

    alecto

    Thursday, November 29, 2012

  • "I'd like to see recycling going up an awful lot" said Councillor Borrett before adding "Naturally, building a massive volcano on the outskirts of Norfolk will help us to achieve this.... mainly by recycling our roles as Councillors into those as Directors of an dirty great waste management consortium."

    Report this comment

    User Removed

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Bill Borrett it is a disgrace that you have not even bothered to find out about the alternative West Norfolk have. You blame people for talking rubbish when you have not done your own research. You are so quick to put down better solutions that are safer than burning. Is it because deep down you want a stinking waste incinerator in West Norfolk. Your conservative chums only vote along with you because we all know that if a councillor stands up against you thay are kicked out just like John Dobson. West Norfolk will not be ignored.

    Report this comment

    Jack

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Two hours ago, comments on the pre inquiry were underneath today's thread, now the comments by readers have been removed. why? Is the EDP employed by NCC or Cory wheelabrator?

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Wednesday, November 28, 2012

  • We are having the wool pulled over our eyes. NCC say we will save £ millions by some residents enduing risk of cancer. Most experienced councils are opting for environmentally friendly options but also and save £ millions. The truth is whatever treatment of waste we opt for we do not pay the landfill tax that is the reason for change. The reason residents do not trust the County Council is they picked a dodgy company with fines as long as your arm for polluting and fraud. I agree kick them in the Ballots next May.

    Report this comment

    Alan Allan

    Wednesday, November 28, 2012

  • Mr Borrett says he is keen to see the details of the West Norfolk alternative and that the borough council had no power to withhold the confidential information. How can he insinuate that NCC are being kept in the dark by WNBC when there was an open day at the council offices so that anyone - yes, anyone - could go along and look at the technology. Norwich isn't a million miles away (not in terms of mileage anyway!) so why didn't he come? Could it be that he's not really interested?

    Report this comment

    Sandy.L

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Cllr. Borrett has, by NCC's decision to ignore their given mandate and replace it with incineration, broken the contract and hence, in my view, NCC and cllr. Borrett are not in charge of anything but their bully boy cabinet. The work done by the Kings Lynn Borough council, i.e. alternatives to burning resources, which mean modern technology and the jobs that come with it, should have been done by NCC, who has failed, since it encountered opposition to these plans, to work on a plan B. NCC ordered a study into land fill mining in 2006, but failing political will by both major parties to establish a modern recycling industry and require companies to reuse recyclables, NCC failed to alleviate their impending landfill deadline and did nothing.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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