Press Release - Cork Harbour Alliance for a Safe Environment -20th June 2019
Indaver has advised CHASE by letter of plans to apply to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for an industrial emissions licence for their Ringaskiddy incinerator in the coming weeks, even though a decision has not yet been delivered following the CHASE High Court challenge to planning which closed on Monday 27 May 2019. (letter below)
Planning permission for the Ringaskiddy incinerator was granted by Bord Pleanala in May 2018 against the recommendation of the Board’s Planning Inspector Derek Daly, who led a 2 week planning hearing in April/May 2016 and who became the third senior Board Inspector to recommend refusal since 2004.
CHASE alleges that the Board acted unlawfully in the way it dealt with the planning application and in how it arrived at its decision. Permission to bring the case was given by the High Court in July 2018 following the May 2018 grant of planning.
Following a two week High Court hearing in March 2019 with an extra day allocated on May 27 for closing remarks, High Court Judge David Barniville reserved judgement and advised that he would aim for a decision as soon as possible.
CHASE Chairperson Mary O’Leary said “Indaver are obviously presuming that their permission will stand in advance of any High Court decision, which we believe is a premature assumption.” She continued “It is of note however that recent peer reviewed studies show that particles coming out of incinerators are more toxic than for other combustion processes*, which reinforces concerns we have voiced over the years.”
Research carried out by Chinese scientists and published in April 2019 [https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2018.12.065 ] in the Journal of Hazardous Materials states that “Fine particles (PM2.5) emitted from municipal solid waste incineration (MSWI) contain high amounts of toxic compounds and pose a serious threat to environment and human health.”
The EPA is the body responsible in Ireland for the issuing of industrial emissions licences. At the helm of the EPA is Director General Laura Burke, who joined as the EPA as a Director in 2004 directly from employment by Indaver as Project Manager for their Cork incinerator project. In 2011 Ms Burke succeeded Mary Kelly as Director General, EPA when Mary Kelly departed to take up the position of Chairperson of An Bord Pleanala. Ms Burke was reappointed for a second term as Director General of the Environmental Protection Agency in November 2018.