THE FIGHT GOES ON
INCINERATORS TO STAY – BUT THE FIGHT GOES ON
Keep Test Valley Beautiful campaigners say confirmation that the Government is to continue to build waste incinerators has proved that the bin the incinerator campaign is on the right track, by concentrating on the argument that the Wheelabrator development is simply in the wrong place.
Environment minister Rebecca Pow told MP’s, during a Westminster Hall debate, that for the foreseeable future incineration will: “continue to have an important role in diverting waste from landfill, and it is the best option for most waste that cannot be reused or recycled.”
Campaign spokesman Andy Jolliffe said: “It’s disappointing that the “party line” remains the same but this confirms that arguing against incineration as such will probably not produce the result we want. Our argument remains that for so many reasons it would be crazy to build it here.”
During the debate the MP For Romsey and Southampton North, Caroline Nokes, argued for tighter controls on polluted emissions from incinerators and called for an incineration tax similar to the existing landfill tax. Ms Pow effectively dodged the pollution question saying the issue was “devolved”.
In fact, local authorities are responsible for monitoring pollution based on standards set by DEFRA – her own department. She brushed aside the prospect of an imminent incineration tax saying: “The intention is that an incineration tax may never be needed.”
It was the fourth time this year Ms Nokes used a parliamentary platform to the air the issue of what she called the “abomination” of the Wheelabrator Incinerator.
She told MP’s that the EU had recently tightened regulations on emissions, but the UK should go further and “not use the lazy argument that emissions are ‘within legal limits’”.
She said: “I’ve lost count of the number of times we have been told over the last three and a half years that leaving the EU would provide opportunities. Surely this is one such where we can go further and faster than would otherwise been allowed.
“We have declared a climate emergency; we have a bold ambition through the Environment Bill to take radical strides forwards to provide a cleaner and greener environment for us and our children. We cannot do that by continuing to pump pollutants into our atmosphere.”
Meanwhile Reading West MP, Alok Sharma, has replaced Andrea Leadsom as Business Energy and Industrial Strategy Secretary. If he remains in post Mr. Sharma is likely to make the final decision about the Wheelabrator incinerator.
KTVB are gearing up for the next stage of the campaign when Wheelabrator submit their formal planning application and a summary of the thousands of comments and objections. If the application is accepted for consideration people and businesses will have a brief window of opportunity to register to tell the Government directly what they think.
Keep an eye on the press and the KTVB website bintheincinerator.com to avoid missing the date.
If you are able to deliver flyers in the spring or early summer please make contact through the website or firstname.lastname@example.org