Gent Fairhead has re-applied to the Environment Agency, this time for a permit to operate the incinerator with the lower stack of just 35m above surrounding ground levels. This was previously been thrown out by the EA but it appears that the people at Gent Fairhead are trying to hedge their bets – if they don’t get planning permission from Essex County Council for a 58m stack, then they need to find an alternative route.
The 35m stack will have technology that apparently makes it safe to operate at this height, yet there has been no answer to the question as to why this technology isn’t part of the 58m stack plans.
Another piece of news is that Indaver, (Gent Fairhead’s new partner in this venture) is only going to be involved in the incineration aspect of this plant. They will not be involved in any of the other aspects of this “integrated waste management facility” (IWMF), for example, paper pulping and anaerobic digestion. PAIN questions if GF intends to build these facilities at all especially given the scale of these facilities has been reduced since the 2010 planning permission whilst the size of the incinerator has doubled? At the recent community consultation event (the first in years), no clear answer was given to this, but one representative did say that it could be feasible that the incineration could be up and running without any of the others.