The contract to build the controversial Cornwall energy recovery centre (CERC) in St Dennis has been put out to tender by current developer SITA.
The proposed 240,000 tonne a year facility has been the subject of a planning inquiry which began on 16 March this year but was later delayed, and is now unlikely to resume until this month.
The plans to build the facility have faced a campaign of opposition from local residents who have formed the St Dennis Anti-Incinerator Group, which hopes to encourage the council to investigate alternative forms of waste disposal.
This delay in SITA gaining planning permission has meant that the contract has now lapsed. The company has received instruction from Cornwall Council to prepare a revised project plan, which includes a requirement to re-procure the CERC.
SITA is now inviting tenders for the engineering, procurement and construction of the plant, which includes an incinerator with a 390ft chimney, and is expected to provide enough electricity to power 21,000 homes.
A statement from SITA about the tendering process said: “SITA Cornwall is now in the process of inviting tenders to deliver the most economically advantageous construction of the CERC, and given the importance of this project, it will be a necessarily lengthy process.
“Because of the overwhelming need for the centre in Cornwall, we are starting the process now so that we are in a position to award the contract soon after the secretary of state has made a decision on the planning appeal, should this go in our favour.”
The deadline for submission of the prequalification is 1 November.