Having considered consultation responses and the report of the Select Committee on Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to the draft national policy statement for hazardous waste which was laid before Parliament on 14 July 2011, I am today laying (under sections 9(8) and 5(4) of the Planning Act 2008), the proposed national policy statement for hazardous waste. The Government’s response to the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee report (under section 9(5) of the Planning Act 2008 was laid earlier this morning.
A written response to the consultation is also being published on the Department’s website at: www.gov.uk.
National policy statements are critical to the new planning system, which will help developers bring forward hazardous waste projects of national significance without facing unnecessary delays. Decisions will be taken in an accountable way by elected Ministers taking social, environmental and economic impacts into account. The process will also ensure that local people have an opportunity to have their say about how their communities develop.
The hazardous waste national policy statement sets out our need for new hazardous waste infrastructure to manage the hazardous waste. Despite measures to prevent and minimise the production of hazardous waste, arisings have remained significant despite the economic downturn. DEFRA’s “Strategy For Hazardous Waste Management in England”, issued in 2010 sets out the Department’s policies for the management of hazardous waste, which are essentially to manage it in accordance with the waste hierarchy, so that we recycle or recover the waste where possible and reduce amounts sent for final disposal. That strategy set out the types of facility needed, some of which are nationally significant.
We look to the market to provide these facilities. The waste industry is best placed to consider the most appropriate types of technologies to use. Government’s role is to provide the right framework and encouragement to the private sector to bring the necessary infrastructure forward. This national policy statement sets out the framework in which decisions for applications for development consent for hazardous waste infrastructure will be made and should provide industry with the clarity it needs to bring forward applications for development consent for new infrastructure for hazardous waste.
The proposed national policy statement for hazardous waste will be designated if a period of 21 sitting days elapses without the House of Commons resolving during that period that the statement should not be proceeded with, pursuant to section 5(4)(a) of the Planning Act 2008.