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Tories reveal anti incinerator credentia

Click Here To View Peter Ainsworth Letter

24 November 2006

Pressure is mounting on council bosses to drop the option for an incinerator at Costessey after a senior Conservative revealed opposition to burning waste.

Shadow environment secretary Peter Ainsworth said a major expansion of incineration plants could not be justified without further research into recycling.

His views contrast with the Conservative-controlled Norfolk County Council, which has kept incineration as one of its options to deal with the county's waste.

The news coincides with plans by campaigners to hold a public meeting on the anniversary of a successful event hosted by the Evening News as part of our campaign against incinerators.

In a letter to anti-incinerator campaigners, Mr Ainsworth, the Conservative shadow secretary of state for environment, food and rural affairs, said: "The substantial increase in proposed incineration is coming at the expense of a successful and ambitious recycling strategy.

"I believe far more analysis needs to be undertaken into ways of improving the way we deal with waste before a major expansion of incineration could be justified."

While fears remain over the effect of emissions from incinerators on health, the Evening News has pledged to support families worried that an incinerator will be built in Longwater Lane in Costessey.

Waste Recycling Group's (WRG) bid was chosen by Norfolk County Council in 2005. But it was de-selected at the end of July because it could not secure the land needed.

The council is in discussions with WRG's rival bidder SRM (NEWS). At the end of November both firms will be asked to clarify their bids ahead of an evaluation of both in the new year.

Members of Norfolk Against Incineration and Landfill (Nail) are planning a public meeting in January. Organiser Linda Mitchell said: "We believe it quite likely that WRG will be brought back into the picture. Of course we would be please to be proven wrong but we are very guarded as the county are so secretive."

Details of the meeting will be released in due course, but people wanting to help organise the event can contact Nail2 via its website at www.nail2.co.uk