SDC to try and scupper incinerator project by withholding its waste from county council
STROUD District Council will explore whether it can keep hold of the household waste it collects and prevent it from being burnt in the proposed Javelin Park incinerator following a vote at Ebley Mill on Thursday night (February 21).
Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green Party members backed a motion put down by Cllr Martin Whiteside (Green, Thrupp) and seconded by Cllr Paul Denney (Lab, Cam West), which called for the authority to investigate whether it could legally withhold its black bag rubbish from Gloucestershire County Council and dispose of it in a more environmentally friendly way.
The vast majority of the Conservative group on SDC, which has twice objected in the past to the incinerator scheme being pursued by their Tory colleagues on the county council, abstained.
Their refusal to endorse the motion prompted jeers from Labour, Lib Dem and Green Party councillors.
During the debate, Cllr Chris Brine (Lab, Stonehouse) challenged the Tories to support the motion, saying the council had talked the talk and now it was time for it to walk the walk.
Introducing his motion, Cllr Whiteside said: "The question is can we do more than just complain about the incinerator? The question is do we have to send our waste to a system our communities do not want?"
Cllr Whiteside said the Localism Act might let SDC hang on to its waste and send it to recycling providers instead of passing it over to GCC as it does now.
He added that if SDC was able to withhold its waste from GCC, it could invite other local authorities opposed to the scheme to do so, potentially throwing the project into doubt.
Cllr David Drew (Lab, Paganhill) said: "If this authority says it is not prepared to send its waste to this monstrosity then the whole case for it will fall apart."
During the debate, former mayor John Marjoram (Green, Trinity) hit out at Stroud MP Neil Carmichael, saying it was 'disgraceful' he was not supporting the incinerator call-in campaign.
In a statement supplied to the SNJ ahead of the meeting, the Conservative leader Keith Pearson (Upton St Leonards), said his party felt the motion was not ‘properly timed’ and did not need to be tabled for SDC to look at whether it could withhold its waste.
Cllr Nigel Cooper (Painswick), one of two Conservative councillors to vote against the motion, said he believed the incinerator would be ‘safe, economical and environmentally sound’.