Newquay and St Austell MP Stephen Gilbert has warned that the decision to uphold an appeal for Cornwall’s Energy Recovery Centre (CERC) at St Dennis, St Austell “fundamentally undermines” Government plans to become the greenest ever.
Sita’s appeal for the energy-from-waste (EfW) facility was upheld after the company appealed a decision by the former Cornwall County Council in March 2009 to reject the 240,000 tonne facility.
Gilbert, an outspoken critic of EfW technology, told the Commons: “There is anger because a Government who make much of their localism agenda have overruled the wishes of the local parish council, the former district council and the former county council’s planning committee, and ignored representations from Cornwall’s six MPs.
“There is disappointment because the Government have fundamentally undermined their claims to be ‘the greenest Government ever’. There is dismay because the incinerator is the wrong solution to Cornwall’s waste problems and might dominate the small village of St Dennis for four decades to come.”
Gilbert also asked the Deputy Leader of the House whether waste PFI contracts would be material considerations in planning policy in future: “Does that not fundamentally undermine the plan-led approach that the Government want to adopt? How can development be plan-led if local people who have no control over the contracts signed by a local authority will always be trumped by the provisions of that contract? How can it be right for a document for use in a public inquiry to be redacted? There should be no document needed for a public inquiry that is not available in full to all participants.”