Even if we recycle all we can and everyone does their best to prevent waste, there will always be rubbish leftover that needs to be treated.
Currently, the majority of rubbish produced in Herefordshire and Worcestershire that isn't recycled goes to the landfill site at Hill and Moor that is operated by our contractor. As space there is limited and legislation requires us to find alternatives to landfill, a treatment facility is required.
The Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy for Herefordshire and Worcestershire (2004-2034), sets out the problems faced by the two counties in relation to treating rubbish, as well as focusing in on how these problems can be tackled using practical and affordable solutions.
As part of the strategy, an appraisal was carried out and consulted upon. It compared different technologies for dealing with rubbish which hasn't been recycled.
These options included:
- Energy from Waste – (EfW)
- Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT)
The conclusion of the appraisal was that an Energy from Waste solution is the best option for Herefordshire and Worcestershire.
In May 2010 our contractor submitted a planning application to Worcestershire County Council proposing a new Energy from Waste facility, called EnviRecover, on a site in Hartlebury, near Kidderminster.
On 1 March 2011, Worcestershire County Council’s (WCC) planning committee met to debate and decide on the EnviRecover planning application. The committee voted unanimously to be ‘minded to approve’ the planning application for EnviRecover. As part of the standard planning process the application is now subject to a call in period by Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.
On Monday 18 April 2011, the Environment Agency issued an Environmental Permit for EnviRecover. The permit is required in order for our contractor to operate the facility.
On Tuesday 10 May 2011, Worcestershire County Council planners were informed by the Department of Communities and Local Government that the Secretary of State would be 'calling in' the application.
A public inquiry was held at Worcestershire County Council in November 2011.
The Planning Inspectorate has informed the County Planning Authority that following the closure of the public inquiry, the Inspector is now preparing their report and recommendation(s) for submission to the Secretary of State for their consideration. In accordance with Schedule 2 of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004, the Secretary of State will issue their decision(s) on or before 23 April 2012.
Following the public inquiry, the Secretary of State has postponed a decision on EnviRecover. The delay is due to the National Planning Policy Framework which came into force on 27 March. As a result all parties now need further time to consider the proposal In light of the new framework. Therefore the Secretary of State has varied the timetable for his decision to allow all parties time to deal with this matter and will now issue his decision on or before 19 July 2012.
On 20 July 2012 the County Planning Authority was informed by the Department of Communities and Local Government that the Secretary of State has decided to grant planning permission for EnviRecover.
Further details about EnviRecover can be viewed on Mercia Waste Management's EnviRecover website.