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The day started with the continuation of the cross examination of Mr Ryan Mellor by Buckfastleigh Community Forum’s legal representative, Mr Charlie Hopkins.  Mr Hopkins picked up from where he left off yesterday by challenging the blasting window period proposed, with relevance to local flora and fauna contrasting it against the time it has be suggested blasting will take.  Blasting was suggested to take longer than the window that has been proposed.

He went on to challenge Mr Mellor over concerns about what it would take in terms of the disturbance towards the bats for them to halt site operations and furthermore mentioned whether monitoring will be factored into this to estimate a regulator gauge.

Mr Mellor was then re-examined by MVV’s barrister suggesting that impacts of development were short term and furthermore that there would be benefits on biodiversity from the development in the long term.

Following on from this, Mr Tim Stacey, who will be giving a statement later in the inquiry, asked a number of questions including how much reliance was placed on Mr Nuttall’s evidence.

It was then time for Mr Westmoreland Smith to lead evidence from Mr Roger Miles, who is a planning consultant with 29 years experience in waste management projects and has worked as director in numerous planning consultancies.  Mr Miles said that there is no requirement to look at alternative sites and that distance for transport of IBA was only one of the factors to be considered and not as DCC suggests a major policy objective. Furthermore, he reinforced that soft market research was the only way to gauge the market.  He further suggested that the development was beneficial to the local community.

This was followed by rapid fire cross examination of Mr Miles by Rupert Warren QC.  One question was, what constituted ‘local’ under various permissions.  Mr Warren suggested local meant the Plymouth area; Mr Miles steadfastly insisted this included all of Devon and potentially extended to Somerset and Bridgewater.

Another point was over the quality of the ‘soft’ research over the processing facilities’ future market.  Mr Miles was then taken through several alternative sites and their suitability to the distances from the EFW plant.

The inquiry will resume on Tuesday 9 July at 10am with the cross examination of Mr Miles by Buckfastleigh Community Forum’s Charlie Hopkins.

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10 thoughts on “Day 7 Thursday 4 July 2013

  1. This summary of Thursday’s events does not talk about the key issue of the three alternative sites promoted by DCC. Heathfield, Ernisettle and the AI plant at Moorcroft. It is more than likely that the later two could by discussion be made available although might be more expensive than Whitecleave. But MVV have done very little to explore them. Charlie Hopkins must interrogate Mr Miles on Tuesday. I will be there, in fact I cannot wait, it’s almost as exciting as the tennis.

    • Sorry, Tim, you’re quite right. In my wanting to get something posted I haven’t had a chance to go through notes in detail. I will do though and make some amendments. Kathryn

  2. Difficult enquiry. The internet has made a greater level of communication possible. Perhaps I need to create a Facebook account so as not to say the wrong thing here. Could I paste a link here, about the possible use of IBA to harvest Hydgrogen Gas in Sweden, where IBA is not used as aggregate because it is classed as toxic. What must we do to prevent disaster?

    • The Waste Management World article is interesting in that it states that Sweden acknowledges that Incinerator Bottom Ash (IBA) is eco-toxic. In Sweden they do not use IBA to produce products for construction and road building because the ash contains hazardous substances that do not meet the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency’s strict requirements.
      It seems the practice to keep IBA outside to weather for 6 months is to manage the leaching of environmentally harmful metals and prevent the risk of hydrogen gas being formed, since accumulation of hydrogen during indoor storage can result in explosion.
      A researcher from Sweden’s Lund University has written a thesis ‘Unsaturated Phase Environmental Processes in MSWI (Municipal Sold Waster Incinertion) Bottom Ash’, is claimed to have the potential to produce up to 20 billion litres of hydrogen gas a year.

  3. I’m concerned about Tim Petts’ comment above – in Plymouth we fought very hard to stop the councils proceeding down the incinerator route – sadly, we failed. Although we agree that the bottom ash argument needs to be resolved properly, there is alarm that the North West area of Plymouth could once again be selected for further blighting by dumping the bottom ash on the green field site at Ernesettle on the banks of the River Tamar! Please do not save Buckfastleigh by sacrificing our area once again!

    • I understand how you feel. Because Plymouth City Council (PCC) has approved the waste incinerator and it’s being built, once it’s operating the ash has to go somewhere. It’s transpired during this inquiry that Plymouth City Council did nothing to suggest or offer land for storing and processing the ash. It was either extremely short-sited of Plymouth City Council or they were very confident they could just dump it on us in Buckfastleigh.
      Devon County Council turned down the original planning application at Whitecleave Quarry because there are alternative sites allocated in the Waste Plan that the applicant did not investigate. Whitecleave Quarry is not an allocated site in the Waste Plan. Another alternative site is Moorecroft Quarry, a working quarry.

      • Exactly “…that the applicant did not investigate…”

        Whilst it is true that PCC are responsible for the granting of permission to build MVV’s wasteful incinerator – lead officer Alan Hartridge the worst culprit being responsible for making alterations to planning documentation past present and future, and most notably waving condition 8 of incinerator building application (that which stipulated MVV could not build let alone operate without a working solution for the 65,000 tonnes per ash they will produce); it is also true that DCC as part of the South West Devon Waste Partnership were jointly (along with all members) responsible for this travesty. Collectively they have let all of us down, every single citizen they should be duty bound to serve and protect all across the South West Devon and South East Cornwall region. MVV/ MoD are the villains here and our authorities are complicit in their crime. Deceptive, belittling, dismissive, lying, misleading, slander, tactics employed by MVV typical of a cowardly bully; but their greatest weapon against our joint campaign is to divide us. Please don’t allow this to happen. If an individual feels the need to promote division between our great communities (Buckfastleigh and Plymouth), then ignore them, their views are very much in the minority.

        Together we stand a greater chance of successfully opposing MVV/ MoD/ Gilpin; that is why we must continue to support each other.

  4. Exactly “…that the applicant did not investigate…”

    Whilst it is true that PCC are responsible for the granting of permission to build MVV’s wasteful incinerator – lead officer Alan Hartridge the worst culprit being responsible for making alterations to planning documentation past present and future, and most notably waving condition 8 of incinerator building application (that which stipulated MVV could not build let alone operate without a working solution for the 65,000 tonnes per ash they will produce); it is also true that DCC as part of the South West Devon Waste Partnership were jointly (along with all members) responsible for this travesty. Collectively they have let all of us down, every single citizen they should be duty bound to serve and protect all across the South West Devon and South East Cornwall region. MVV/ MoD and our authorities are complicit. Deceptive, belittling, dismissive, lying, misleading, slander, tactics employed by MVV typical of a cowardly bully; but their greatest weapon against our joint campaign is to divide us. Please don’t allow this to happen. If an individual feels the need to promote division between our great communities (Buckfastleigh and Plymouth), then ignore them, their views are very much in the minority.

    Together we stand a greater chance of successfully opposing MVV/ MoD/ Gilpin; that is why we must continue to support each other..

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