Covanta’s plans to burn more kept on ice

Photo: Operator’s chair in the Covanta plant in Poolbeg 

By Paul Carton

Covanta have had to withdraw their application to burn more waste. The application to ‘increase the annual capacity of existing waste to energy facility by 90000 tonnes’ which was lodged with An Bord Pleanala (the board) requested a pre-consultation with the board in accordance with any strategic infrastructure development (SID). However the board have made Covanta aware that their operation was in place before the SID amendment was made to the Planning and Development Act and therefore no pre-consultation is needed. This paves the way for Covanta to put in a new application that doesn’t require a new environmental impact survey (EIS) despite the fact it will mean more emissions. As of yet nothing has been lodged but Barry Sheridan of Aecom Ireland Ltd. who lodged the application on behalf of Dublin Waste to Energy informed the board that ‘they will be in contact in due course with regard to progressing the requirement to increase the annual capacity of existing waste to energy facility’.

Covanta predict no further impact on traffic and transport due to the increase in tonnage due to the use of larger trucks than was assessed in the initial EIS which had been passed on the basis of smaller trucks. How Covanta’s day in court this year resulting in fines and a slap on the wrist will influence the board’s decision is yet to be seen. NewsFour will keep you posted on any new developments.