'We do not want this' - action group step up fight against incinerator

David Glover and his wife and daughter 

David Glover and his fiance Julie Sant and David's daughter Jasmine Glover are all against the proposed plans for a waste incinerator near St Ives. - Credit: Archant

A campaign group say a hospital waste incinerator would “obliterate” their rural landscape if plans to build it in their village go ahead. 

Envar submitted proposals for the waste energy recovery facility last year – which will include a 26-metre-high chimney stack at The Heath, Woodhurst. 

Action group ‘People Opposing Woodhurst Incinerator’ (POWI) submitted a petition of 2,700 signatures against plans at a Cambridgeshire County Council meeting last month. 

Concerns have been raised over plans to build a Medical waste incinerator near St Ives. 

Concerns have been raised over plans to build a Medical waste incinerator near St Ives. - Credit: Google Images

David Glover, who set up the group to raise awareness of Envar’s proposals, has warned it is “not yet a done deal” and POWI will continue to fight until a decision is made at a council meeting in the coming weeks. 

Mr Glover said: “We wanted to live out in the country, somewhere that is rural, and then you hear that this incinerator will be built with a chimney that will obliterate the landscape of where you live. 

“There is not a need for this, it is just another way for this company to make money at our expense.

“We are already catered for at an existing site at Addenbrooke’s Hospital – that has been there for over 40 years.  

Fundraising page set up by Say No To Woodhurst Incinerator group.

A Go Fund Me page has been set up by the Say No To Woodhurst Incinerator group. - Credit: Say No To Woodhurst Incinerator

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“Thousands of people live around Envar and the air quality will be compromised – this is our birth right.” 

POWI currently has around 4,000 members and more than 1,000 written objections were lodged when plans were first submitted. 

“My dream home will be blighted by this incinerator,” Mr Glover, who has lived in St Ives since 1971, added. 

“This is totally unacceptable and there is a slew of public opinion about this and very real concerns to livelihoods. 

“Traffic is a huge concern too; Woodhurst is already used as a rat-run and this could lead to more lorries trundling down the roads. 

“We will continue to make sure that people don’t forget about this – it is not yet a done deal."

A spokesperson for Envar said: "Envar is confident in the considerable environmental benefits of its 'regeneration' project.

"The project will bring together a range of advanced technologies for the first time to create a fully circular facility for the efficient production of renewable green gas and peat-free, carbon sequestering compost and biofertilizer – thus reducing our dependency on fossil fuel and peat based agricultural products. 

"This will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and directly substitute natural gas in the grid, while also addressing concerns regards fuel security and energy supply.

"The Healthcare waste Energy Recovery Facility (HERF) is a small part of the project (6 per cent of the total material to be processed) and offers a safe disposal route for waste which cannot be re-used or recycled.

"Recovered heat will be used for organics processing rather than being wasted.

"Other benefits include CO2 recovery and solar electrical generation from roof space. The HERF incorporates state of the art technology (which is highly regulated and controlled) to safely process the material as an alternative to landfill. 

"Ash from the process can be recycled and used – for example in construction materials.  

"Envar continues to commission detailed, expert and impartial studies for all aspects of the project and its impacts – including noise, air quality, visual impacts and traffic. 

"These will be made available in the public domain as part of the ongoing planning process and we would encourage local residents to continue to refer to these for more detailed and fact-based information about the project."