As promised representatives of NO2INCINERATOR attended the Plans Panel East committee meeting yesterday where representatives of Biffa, gave a glossy PowerPoint presentation on the proposed EfW Incinerator at the former Skelton Grange Power Station site.
Several pertinent questions addressed to the Biffa representatives by Councillors Lyons and Grahame went unanswered and it was very plain that the Councillors and local community representatives present were patently unimpressed by their performance.
When pressed on their plans to mitigate any negative effects of the plant on residents of the immediate and surrounding areas they eventually offered the possibility of a fund for community development at the derisory sum of 10p per tonne of processed waste over the lifetime of a 25 year contract, a possible £750, ooo, to compensate the community for the damage done to the environment, the blighting of our children's future and the stigmatising of the area as an incinerator hotspot! Biffa added though that if their plans for the 300,000 Tonne EfW (incinerator) plant were opposed and an appeal was required, even this derisory sum would be used as a Biffa fighting fund and the local community would get nothing!
It is not often you see a group of Councillors rendered speechless but the stunned silence following this remark was palpable in Committee Room 7 at the Civic Hall yesterday. After a collective intake of breath from the assembled Councillors the Chair, Councillor David Congreve (Labour) Beeston & Holbeck, made it plain to the Biffa representatives that the committee and its planning permissions where not for sale at any price and while Biffa backtracked a little on the implication they did not alter their position on this point.
The committee told Biffa to go away and consult more widely with community groups in the area who were obviously deeply unhappy with the ‘consultation’ process so far, but despite there being community representatives available to speak to at the meeting no attempts at contact were made.