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Expanding the material recycling facility at Sutton Courtenay - no thanks

Tuesday, 13 November 2012 10:40

Materials for recycling Materials for recycling Photo: © Jane Tomlinson

While we are big supporters of recycling and reducing the amount of waste going to landfill, that doesn't mean we automatically support waste management companies in expanding their premises.

Today we have written to the Senior Planning Officer at Oxfordshire Couty Council to object to the proposal by FCC Environmental to increase their materials recycling facility (MRF) together with a proposed vehicle compound and soil processing facility at Sutton Courtenay. We think their proposal is disproportionately large for their stated requirement and inappropriate.

FCC Environmental say that the changes they propose are necessary to allow them to service a contract with the OCC for Residual Waste Bulking and Haulage for which they are tendering. The guaranteed annual throughput for the two District Councils (Vale of the White Horse and South Oxfordshire) which the plant could credibly service under the proposed contract is 10,000 tons a year. The current actual annual throughput is 38,000 tons. The application seeks an increase in throughput of 130,000 tons a year, four times the current actual throughput. This is wholly disproportionate.

Their proposals would increase the size of the building by 75% (3,822 square metres to 6,760 square metres), the throughput of the plant by some 300% (70,000 tons to 200,000 tons a year) and the life of the plant also by nearly 300% (from 6 years to 17 years). Such substantial increases represent too big a change and should be dealt with by a properly reasoned planning application.

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