Concerns over combined heat and generator plan for landfill site

CONCERNS: The Woodford site in Warboys where the combined heat and power plant could go

CONCERNS: The Woodford site in Warboys where the combined heat and power plant could go - Credit: Archant

Villagers in Warboys who campaigned against hazardous waste being dumped at a landfill site fear they have a new battle on their hands after a bid to build a £16 million combined heat and power plant emerged.

The project - which would see the burning of waste wood and processing of water leachate imported from other landfill sites - is being put forward by Sycamore Planning Ltd.

An exhibition of plans for the power plant, on part of the landfill site, will take place at the village sports and social club from 2-9pm on November 28.

Paul McLaughlin, project manager, said the system was safe and that any emissions from the site would have to meet strict controls set by the Environment Agency.

“If there were any exceedances we would be shut down - make no mistake about that,” Mr McLaughlin said.

He said the scheme, which still needed planning permission and a licence from the Environment Agency, would create 16 new jobs, with probably two or three more at Woodford, which operates a waste processing facility at the landfill site, and would put £750,000 a year into the economy through wages.

Warboys Landfill Action Group battled for decades over hazardous waste at the landfill site next to the village.

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Betty Ball, from the action group, said: “We are not going to take this lying down. We want to make sure it is a safe process and at the moment that is unclear, which is why people are concerned.”

She said the landfill site would not be able to take any further waste after December and that the remaining cells were to be capped and the land reinstated next year.

Mrs Ball said the group had a good relationship with current operators Woodford.

But she said the landfill site contained 250,000 tonnes of toxic waste which should not have been there and had never been able to comply with its level of leachates - a watery waste.

Mrs Ball said the proposed plant was just a kilometre from the village school and was on lower ground which effectively reduced the height of the chimneys.

But Mr McLaughlin said the unit was safe and that waste wood from the site would be burned there, instead of being taken as far away as Glasgow for disposal and that the heat would be used to evaporate leachates.

He said materials coming to the site would be tested rigorously.