The Petition of residents of Dronfield, and others
Declares that a hazardous waste gasification/incineration plant is proposed to be built on the site of Sheepridge Business Park, only a few miles away from Dronfield; further declares that the technology proposed by the newly established company is untested and unproven; notes that there are no long term case studies on the health effects of these processes, while every day more and more evidence is coming to light of the harmful effects of airborne pollution from industry and traffic;
Believes that the site is too close to residents, with 19 schools and around 30,000 people living within just two miles of the proposed site; further notes that the site is in close proximity to many farms, livestock, fisheries and allotments, meaning there is a real danger of dioxins entering the local food chain; further notes that the site is bordered by greenbelt land and protected woodland, threatening the devastation of all the wildlife in the area and risking further contamination of the watercourses and food chain from the movement of wildlife in and around the site; further declares that the site is close to existing businesses that will move away, leading to hundreds of job losses and difficulties attracting any future investment;
Further notes that the waste, coming from a 30 mile radius, will need to travel past many schools, through small villages and country lanes to reach the proposed site; believes this is unsafe, unnecessary and unacceptable; further declares that residents have not been reassured by communications from Cyclamax, and do not trust the company to be running such a hazardous process; and considers that profit and money-making are being put before public health and safety.
The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government to do all in his power to oppose the building of this hazardous waste gasification and incineration plant and ensure that this proposed technology is not given permission to destroy a whole area of Chesterfield and North East Derbyshire.
And the Petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Natascha Engel, Official Report, 4 November 2009; Vol. 498, c. 961 .]
Observations from the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government:
The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government is aware that a planning application has been submitted to Derbyshire County Council in respect of the above development. He is advised that the application to enable the recycling and sorting of waste materials and generation of renewable energy at the Sheepbridge Resource Park (reference CW2/0708/56) is likely to be considered by the planning committee on 7 December 2009.
The determination of the planning application is primarily the responsibility of the County Council as the local planning authority and the Secretary of State cannot comment on the merits or otherwise of any application.
Decisions on planning applications are required to be in accordance with the adopted development plan, unless material considerations indicate otherwise. It is the responsibility of the local planning authority to identify and weigh up all the different issues, in the context of the specific local circumstances, having regard to the views of local residents and other interested parties.
The Secretary of State may decide to call-in an application for his own determination where he considers that it raises issues of more than local importance but his policy is to be very selective about this. As it is possible that the application may, at some future date come within his jurisdiction, it would be inappropriate to comment on the matters raised in the petition.