The fight against Peel Holdings' incinerator, which will be plonked on the Trafford side of the Manchester Ship Canal, has been going on for three years, with the first big public march against the plans happening in January 2011 (see Salford Star article here) when hundreds of people chanted `Peel Holdings go to hell!'…
Since then the arguments against the incinerator, or Barton Renewable Energy Plant, have got more technical, with experts denouncing the plans (click here) and politicians from both Trafford and Salford agreeing that it would probably cause harm to the local population.
"When Peel Energy first showed me their intended plans I told them I was primarily concerned about emissions from the chimney, toxic waste removal from the site, and the increase in traffic, caused by ludicrously importing waste material from outside the area" said Trafford councillor Michael Cornes "None of these concerns have been satisfactorily addressed, and my concerns have only increased…It has been labelled `biomass' to make it sound environmentally friendly but even Peel Energy admit to 5-10% non-biomass and the Environment Agency confirm it is an incinerator!" (see here)
Indeed, Salford Council added to the objections, stating: "The location of the plant and the impact of the emissions remain a serious concern in terms of health impacts and compliance with the air quality standards." (see here)
A similar incinerator actually blew up in Holland just as the Public Inquiry into the plant was about to open (see here) and at that Inquiry, not one single member of the public or organisation stood up to support Peel's plans – except Peel Holdings itself, of course (see here).
Despite all the opposition, led by the brave Breathe Clean Air Group, last week the Government approved the incinerator in what the Group called "a devastating blow to the people of Trafford, Salford and Manchester…"
The full statement from the Breathe Clean Air Group reads…
"The historic and unprecedented level of local opposition, including from local residents, doctors, businesses, MPs, Salford Council and all of Trafford's Councillors, has been swept aside to make way for an outdated, dirty incinerator.
It is ironic that the decision made by our locally elected Councillors, who understand the local issues and represent the local community, has been overturned by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, whose remit includes supporting local Councils. The decision ignores all the specific circumstances that make Davyhulme a completely unsuitable place for this plant. Instead the Government's National Strategy has been prioritised. With its inadequate technology and short chimney stack, this incinerator will burn contaminated wood and plastics, creating air pollution that can lead to serious health impacts and premature death.
In our opinion, the original reasons on which Trafford's entire Planning Committee unanimously rejected the plant, are still entirely valid: there is a body of credible evidence suggesting that this plant will cause harm and people may therefore leave the area.
The local air pollution is already of grave concern and as such, the Breathe Clean Air Group has made an official complaint to the European Commission. Adding a huge amount of additional pollution from this incinerator is irresponsible.
There are cleaner alternatives for creating energy from waste, such as plasma gasification, but today's decision means that local residents will be stuck with a dirty, polluting process for at least 25 years. We believe the careless nature of this decision will be evidenced in years to come as the impact on health becomes reality."
To follow future developments see…