The Rookery South (Resource Recovery Facility) Order 2011 - The Rookery South (Resource Recovery Facility) Order 2011 Contents

Petitions 37 (Central Bedfordshire Council) and 39 (Bedford Borough Council)

25.  The two Councils each presented a petition of amendment (Nos. 37 and 39). Once again, these petitions were near identical, and the amendments proposed in them absolutely so.


26.  The councils sought the inclusion in the Order of a definition of 'residual waste'. While the definition proposed appeared unobjectionable, it also appeared to us to add nothing to existing provision and therefore to be unnecessary.


27.  The Councils sought to limit the size of the area from which Covanta could source waste for its facility, dealing with concerns also raised in the two petitions of general objection on this point. The amendment would have limited Covanta to sourcing waste from the administrative areas of Cambridgeshire County Council, Northamptonshire County Council, Milton Keynes Council, Bedford Borough Council, Central Bedfordshire Council, Luton Borough Council, Buckinghamshire County Council, Hertfordshire County Council, and the Royal borough of Windsor and Maidenhead. The Councils argued strongly in evidence that a need to bring waste to the facility from far-flung areas would have significant negative environmental impacts both around the facility and more widely. They argued, too, that Covanta would be required to source waste distantly because of existing, planned and potential local capacity within Bedfordshire and surrounding counties.

28.  As noted at paragraphs 20 to 22 above, we had sympathy with these points but noted that the energy from waste facility to be provided as a national infrastructure project will bring benefits as regards power generation and that the economic challenge of sourcing waste is a matter for Covanta.


29.  Finally, the Councils sought to introduce amendments enabling works on a proposed Bedford to Milton Keynes waterway, which would cross the Green Lane land to be compulsorily acquired by Covanta under the Order. In short, completion of necessary works for the waterway would be much more expensive after Covanta had built its facility than would be the case if they were carried out first. We were persuaded that this was a strong point, and ruled that Covanta did have a case to answer in relation to these proposed amendments. On 19 December, Covanta and the Councils jointly told us that an agreement had been reached in principle under which Covanta would supply to Councils a sum of money required to undertake those waterway works, and that this would resolve the matters raised without our having to amend the Order. A detailed proposal, agreed by all parties, was presented to us on 13 February 2013. That being so, we see no need for the Order itself to be amended in this respect.

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© Parliamentary copyright 2013
Prepared 28 February 2013