Waste bosses allay Snetterton incinerator fears

Fears that another incinerator could be in the pipeline for Norfolk have been allayed, after the company looking to earmark a location for future waste uses ruled out such a plant on the site.

Norfolk Environmental Waste Services (NEWS), part of the Norfolk County Council-owned Norse Group of companies, wants County Hall to allocate a 3.5 hectare site in Harling Road, Snetterton, for waste purposes.

The EDP reported yesterday that the site, currently home to Snetterton Recycling Centre and the Lafarge Ready-Mix plant, is on a list of places being earmarked for future waste plants.

Among the proposed uses for the site were composting, anaerobic digestion, processing of recyclable energy from waste and thermal treatment.

The latter two terms can refer to incineration and, in the planning application for the incinerator at King's Lynn, the company which will build and run it - Cory Wheelabrator - directly refer to the advantages of their site in Saddlebow compared to the one in Snetterton.

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But bosses at Norse yesterday moved to ease concern that they had any long-term plans to have an incinerator running at Snetterton.

Peter Hawes, managing director of Norse Commercial Services, said: 'This is a process which has been going on for about three years.

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'It's a big chunk of land and we wanted to keep our options open, which is why we applied for a variety of waste uses at the site.

'There is no immediate plan to even think about having an energy from waste plant at that site. If it's going to be used for anything, then we will probably fill it up and build industrial units on it.'

At a meeting of the county council's cabinet yesterday, councillors considered the future use of the site, along with dozens of other locations across the county, as part of the Norfolk Minerals and Waste Development Framework.

The council approved the publication of a document which lists dozens of potential waste management and mineral extraction sites, which have been submitted by developers and site owners.

Over the past four years, almost 170 submissions made and assessed for suitability by council officers after consultation.

The number has been whittled them down to just under 60, which officers say should be allocated for uses such as quarries, recycling centres, composting and landfill.

Councillors agreed to approve the publication of documents listing those sites, which will be subject to eight weeks of public consultation.

Following that, the documents will be sent to the Secretary of State and an examination in public will take place in the autumn.

All allocated sites will still need to secure planning permission before they would be able to operate.

Breckland District Council has objected to the Snetterton plans, on the grounds of its affect on other employment development plans and the impact on residents.

William Nunn, Leader of Breckland Council, said: 'I would be happy that the idea of putting an energy from waste plant near Snetterton is explored fully, provided it is proven that it is not detrimental to the communities and the businesses in that area.

'This objection made by Breckland Council is site specific to a proposal put forward and has been made as the plan conflicts with plans we already have for the Snetterton area.

'It does not rule out the principle of Snetterton accommodating an energy plant and no options on this have been ruled in or out.'


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