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PEEL HOLDINGS BARTON INCINERATOR DANGEROUS SAYS US EXPERT
 

Star date: 31st October 2012

"DANGEROUS" EMISSIONS FROM BARTON INCINERATOR "CONSISTENTLY UNDERESTIMATED OR EVEN ACTIVELY MISREPRESENTED" SAYS BIOMASS EXPERT

On November 13th, Peel Holdings begins its appeal against the refusal of planning permission for its Barton Renewable Energy Plant, which campaigners say will have adverse affects on Salford people.

Now a leading biomass expert has provided testimony for the appeal hearing, stating that the incinerator "strikes me as one of the most dangerous I have seen" and that its "pollutants have been consistently underestimated or even actively misrepresented."

Full story here…


Peel Holdings plan for an incinerator on the banks of the Manchester Ship Canal has already been refused by Trafford Council as a "threat to residents" and opposed by Salford Council citing "serious concern in terms of health impacts and compliance with the air quality standards" (see previous Salford Star article – click here).

Now Dr Mary Booth, a leading expert on air emissions from biomass power plants, has slammed the incinerator "as one of the most dangerous I have seen in terms of potential impacts to human health and general lack of oversight and rigor in permitting".

She adds that potential emissions from the incinerator "have consistently been underestimated or even actively misrepresented. This means that the Barton facility will present a greater threat to human health and the environment than the EA [Environment Agency] or the developer [Peel Holdings] admits."

Dr Booth, who runs the Partnership for Policy Integrity in the States and has reviewed numerous air emissions permits for wood-burning plants, has provided a 16 page technical submission to the forthcoming public hearing brought by Peel which has contested the refusal of planning permission for its incinerator.

In her submission she accuses Peel Holdings of "greenwashing" the project, slamming the developer's claims of a `clean', `safe' plant… "None of this is true" she states "The plant will emit as much particulate matter and NOx [Nitrogen Oxide] as a coal plant, along with heavy metals. Greenhouse gas emissions per unit energy generated are higher than from gas or coal."

Dr Booth's submission makes horrific reading, most of it technical concerning the variety of materials that will be burnt at the plant, and the health affects on the community. Yet the Environment Agency has already granted Peel an Environmental Permit, a move branded as "irresponsible" by the Breathe Clean Air Group which campaigns against the plant, and slated by Dr Booth on an array of levels. Like arsenic emissions…

"As it is, the arsenic emissions postulated in the Barton application result in a modelled concentration in the air near the ground that is 68.66% of the UK health standard" she states "It's surprising that EA would encourage development of a single facility that erodes air quality this much, particularly since they have admitted that actual emissions may be higher than estimated."

Dr Booth adds that safety provisions in the EA permit are "unenforceable" and that "promoting incineration that mobilizes lead and other metals, diffusing them into the atmosphere and depositing them in an already burdened environment, is bad public policy. People and the environment should be protected from new sources of pollution."

While the incinerator is based just across the Ship Canal in Trafford, this is very much a Salford community issue as our city is down wind of the plant due to the south-westerly prevailing wind.

"My testimony will largely focus on emissions of heavy metals from the facility, which I believe will represent a very serious threat to the health of the surrounding community" concludes Dr Booth "I will also comment on the net greenhouse gas emissions impact and I am dismayed by the inadequacy of the controls for nitrogen oxides".

This is yet more evidence against the Barton Renewable Energy Plant, to add to the wealth of information gathered by the Breathe Clean Air Group, which has consistently campaigned against Peel's plans with marches, petitions and street stalls.

"Dr Booth's testimony highlights the dangers of an incinerator burning waste wood, using old technology, in a populated area" says Pete Kilvert, the Group's Chairman "I urge local people to attend the Public Inquiry on 13th November and have their say."

The Public Inquiry begins November 13th at 10am at The International Suite, West Stand at Manchester United's Old Trafford.

The Breathe Clean Air Group is planning to provide a coach to take residents who don't have their own transport, to the first day of the Inquiry.

See www.BreatheCleanAirGroup.co.uk for details.

Harpo wrote
at 07:33:25 on 01 November 2012
Well said , Patrick . An excellent comment from one who worked in waste incineration , and witnessed how rules and regulations are ignored in the avaricious pursuit of profit . We don't want these poison-spewing factories . Keep riding that bike, Pat !
 
Winston Smnith wrote
at 21:00:38 on 31 October 2012
Even Peel don't believe it's safe, otherwise they'd be able to give real guarantees. But they can't, so they don't. It's a poison air factory that will make Peel a lot of money. That's all there is to it.
 
Patrick Sudlow wrote
at 17:20:37 on 31 October 2012
As someone who used to work at GMWaste's Bolton Incinerator, I can ensure people, the Environmental Agency does not regulate or enforce the regulations in place. I reported several issues to them, which they chose to ignore and did not carry out a meaningful investigation of my accusations. Incineration, with it's self-regulatory attitude towards emissions is an environmental disaster. Just as a self-regulatory regime within the financial sector led to the on-going financial crisis. Until we have properly enforced regulations to EU standards or higher by regulators who have some real teeth and financial support, peoples health and well-being will suffer further.
 
Gareth L wrote
at 17:20:32 on 31 October 2012
Shocking reading, but what I think I will find more shocking will be that Dr Booth's findings will probably be ignored. As I am sure the parties that want the incinerator can find an expert to say what they want.
 
A.P. wrote
at 17:19:55 on 31 October 2012
It's time Greedy Peel Holdings were told to sod off .
 
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