Amey to appeal against refusal by Cambridgeshire County Council of £730m energy from waste facility at Waterbeach

PUBLISHED: 14:11 01 April 2019

Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY

Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY

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Amey wants a public inquiry into an energy from waste plant at Waterbeach after telling the county council it remains ‘surprised and disappointed’ at being turned down.

Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY

Chris Smiles of Amey said the proposals “had been extensively assessed by council officers from various professional disciplines and, as a result, was recommended for approval”.

He said the location next to the existing waste disposal facilities and on offer was a one-stop processing and recycling shop.

Mr Smiles said the energy from waste facility would help the county increase its recycling rates – which are currently declining - and reduce landfill whilst saving the county money and boosting its environmental credentials.

“Amey are also investigating an exciting combined heat and power option for the energy from waste plant, further enhancing its green potential, but this can only happen if the plant is located at Waterbeach,” he said.

Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY

The company’s 250,000 tonne 24/7 energy from waste burner was refused planning permission by Cambridgeshire County Council last September.

Council officers had recommended it for approval but the planning committee felt there was a need for more sustainable and innovative solutions to county waste.

A spokesman for CBWIN (Cambridge Without Incineration), a protest group set up to oppose Amey’s plans, was happy the council decided to reject “such an enormous industrial plant sited on the edge of historic Fenland villages that would introduce overwhelming serious and significant harm to landscape, visual and heritage”.

Their spokesman said: “The planning committee found that the proposed development went against national planning policy and the local plan

Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY Visualisation produced by Amey showing how their energy from waster incinerator might look once built at Waterbeach. Picture; AMEY

“It would not be capable of being assimilated into its surroundings without causing unacceptable harm to the visual amenity and the local landscape character and would cause significant harm to any existing neighbouring land uses.

“It would also be significantly visually intrusive, would have an adverse effect on the setting of a historic landscape; the harm outweighed the need.”

CBWIN says the appeal process Amey have triggered will cost the county council tens of thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money and Amey could add legal losses on top if they win.

“That’s an awkward position for subcontractor Amey to put its commissioner Cambridgeshire County Council with whom it has the pleasure of a £730m waste deal.

“Amey is determined to rail road the council into accepting its dream of a giant waste burner as a management solution- the most outdated, dirtiest and least efficient of the energy from waste technologies.”

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