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Whitecleave Quarry, Buckfastleigh Neil Smith, Buckfastleigh Community Forum www.community.buckfastleigh.org.

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Presentation on theme: "Whitecleave Quarry, Buckfastleigh Neil Smith, Buckfastleigh Community Forum www.community.buckfastleigh.org."— Presentation transcript:

1 Whitecleave Quarry, Buckfastleigh Neil Smith, Buckfastleigh Community Forum

2 Quarry Overview 2www.community.buckfastleigh.org

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5 River Dart and tributaries 5www.community.buckfastleigh.org

6 6 Devon County Council have suggested alternative uses for the site such as tourist/activity uses, and suggested that grant funding may be available for this.

7 From this… …to this

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9 9www.community.buckfastleigh.org

10 Buckfastleigh Parish Poll 10www.community.buckfastleigh.org "Do you want Whitecleave Quarry in Buckfastleigh to be used for any handling, processing or storage of industrial waste and bottom ash from waste incineration? Yes or No?" Parish Poll Result NO: 1367 YES: 73 95% said NO Turnout: 49.76%

11 South Hams SAC 11www.community.buckfastleigh.org

12 Environment  South Hams Special Area of Conservation (SAC)  “Protected watercourse” - River Dart, Dean Burn  Protected species - Peregrine Falcons, Otters

13 South Hams SAC 13www.community.buckfastleigh.org “The South Hams SAC consists of a number of constituent SSSIs including Bulkamore Iron Mine (within the District), Buckfastleigh Caves and Potters Wood … The primary reason for designation is the presence of significant breeding and over wintering populations of the Greater Horseshoe bat. In relation to the Totnes Site Allocations DPD the concern would relate to ensuring retention of dispersal corridors. Greater Horseshoe bats foraging routes radiate out from their roosting sites using a limited number of main routes (strategic flyways) ending in a discrete individual foraging area usually within 5km (but up to 6km) of the breeding roosts. … protection of the woodlands and hedges along the strategic flyways is essential to maintaining the bats’ foraging routes. These could be affected by development, if this destroys or harms the woodlands and hedges or disturbance from lighting…. a precautionary approach to retention is required.”

14 South Hams SAC 14www.community.buckfastleigh.org

15 Precautionary Buffer Zones 15www.community.buckfastleigh.org

16 16 ‘Waddenzee Principle’ “In the Waddenzee judgment, the European Court of Justice ruled that a plan or project may be authorised only if a competent authority has made certain that the plan or project will not adversely affect the integrity of the site. “That is the case where no reasonable scientific doubt remains as to the absence of such effects”. Competent national authorities must be “convinced” that there will not be an adverse affect and where doubt remains as to the absence of adverse affects, the plan or project must not be authorised, subject to the procedure outlined in Article 6(4) of the EC Habitats Directive regarding imperative reasons of overriding public interest.” - Office of the Deputy Prime Minister

17 Review of Old Mineral Permissions “The County Council would not be able to present sufficient evidence and it would not be either reasonable or expedient to take enforcement action.” “It was not considered appropriate to establish a liaison group for a quarry that was not operating.”

18 Incinerator Bottom Ash (IBA) 18www.community.buckfastleigh.org “The IBA does not pose any environmental or ecological problems.” Source: MVV (statement of response in relation to IBA concerns as part of Regulation 19 Requests for further information for the Plymouth EfW incinerator) “Incinerator Bottom Ash is the ash which remains in the incinerator furnace after combustion. This material is discharged from the grate to be quenched in a water bath prior to further processing or disposal.” Source: South West Devon Waste Partnership

19 Incinerator Bottom Ash (IBA)  What’s in it?  Is it ‘hazardous’ or ‘non-hazardous’  Is it toxic? Ecotoxic Neurotoxic Genotoxic Source: The Environment Agency

20 Mercury in CFL bulbs 20www.community.buckfastleigh.org Each CFL bulb typically contains 3-4milligrams of Mercury – Source: DEFRA “Does the mercury in a CFL pose a risk? The mercury cannot escape from an intact lamp and, even if the lamp should be broken, the very small amount of mercury contained in a single, modern CFL is most unlikely to cause any harm. ” – Source: DEFRA “The public should contact the local authority for advice on where to dispose of broken or intact CFLs as they should be treated as hazardous waste and should not be disposed of in the bin.” – Source: DEFRA DEFRA’s own estimates suggest that a 240,000 tonne municipal waste incinerator would produce around 20kg of mercury in its IBA.

21 IBA Leachate – academic research 21www.community.buckfastleigh.org “Our results suggest that MSWIBA aqueous leachates need to be formally tested with genotoxic sensitive tests before recycling and support the hypothesis that plant genotoxicity is related to the cellular production of reactive oxygen species (ROS).” * * Evaluation of the genotoxic, mutagenic and oxidant stress potentials of municipal solid waste incinerator bottom ash leachates C.M. Radetski a, B. Ferrari b, S. Cotelle c, J.-F. Masfaraud c, J.F. Ferard a b c ** Chemical behaviour of municipal solid waste incinerator bottom ash in monofills 2004 H. Belevi, D.M. Stämpfli, P. Baccini Leachates of municipal solid waste incineration bottom ash from Macao: Heavy metal concentrations and genotoxicity 2001 Shaolong Fenga, b, Xinming Wangb,,, Gangjian Weib, Pingan Pengb, Yun Yanga, Zhaohui Caoc “ Bottom ash after the quench tank is a reactive mixture in which slow and fast acid/base reactions occur. These intrinsic acid/base reactions continue for at least several months, and the end point is not yet known. The heavy metal concentrations observed in the aqueous extracts reflect primarily the advance of these reactions. Consequently leaching tests based solely on short-term (hours to months) extraction procedures cannot predict the chemical behaviour of bottom ash in monofills.” ** “ Heavy metals in municipal solid waste incineration bottom ash (MSWIBA) may leach into soil and groundwater and pose long-term risks to the environment… Our results suggested that apart from chemical analysis, bioassays like the MN assay of Vicia faba [broad bean] root tip cells should also be included in a battery of tests to assess the eco-environmental risks of bottom ashes before decisions can be made on the utilization, treatment or disposal.” ***

22 IBA and PAH’s 22www.community.buckfastleigh.org “ Solid residues may contain high concentrations of toxic micropollutants the environmental fate of which is clearly of interest. Although heavy metals are subject to regulatory control in the UK under the Environmental Protection Act, relatively little attention has been directed towards emissions of organic micropollutants by routes other than air. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are an important species due to the carcinogenicity and mutagenicity of some of these compounds”. “ Given the levels of PAHs found in bottom ash consigned for landfill the environmental fate of these PAHs, as well perhaps as other semi-volatile organic species, is of interest. Few data exist on the leaching of PAHs from landfilled waste. In one study investigating MWI [Municipal Waste Incinerator] ash and other wastes loaded in a lysimeter PAHs were indeed found to leach from the waste with greater mobility …” This study was primarily for clinical waste incinerators. However, the study stated that “Although the relationship between PAH inputs and outputs is well characterised for the combustion of fuel in vehicles it is relatively unexplored in relation to solid waste.”

23 IBA Leachate – industry research 23www.community.buckfastleigh.org “leaching of copper from recycled road materials containing processed IBA subsequently used as unbound fill into small rivers with sensitive aquatic life in soft water areas may be significant” “it is likely that existing copper concentrations in some rivers in soft water areas will already exceed the EAL [Environmental Assessment Levels] irrespective of the use of IBA in road construction.” “Some key uncertainties remain, mainly associated with the extent to which the available data can be considered representative of a particular IBA product stream… In consequence it is recommended that monitoring of pollutant concentrations in IBA continue.” “The leachate produced during the storage/weathering will require treatment and appropriate disposal as it will contain high concentrations of the chloride and sulphate salts that are highly soluble as well as smaller amounts of metals that are leached from the ash.”

24 Environment Agency Research 24www.community.buckfastleigh.org “At three of the sites drainage from bottom ash and product storage areas is engineered to fall to self-contained systems where potentially contaminated waters are either discharged to foul sewer under consent conditions, contained in a storage lagoon or discharged to a wastewater treatment plant. The fourth site is within a landfill site with an engineered low permeability liner and drainage is collected in the site drainage collection system or recirculated with landfill site leachate.”

25 Whitecleave IBA Leachate Drainage 25 “Surface water runoff generated within the IBA facility and processing yard will drain to a new settlement lagoon to promote water quality prior to discharge from the site. Surface from this part of the site will also pass through a second set of settlement lagoons located beneath the A38 flyover, prior to discharging to the Dean Burn.” – MVV’s Environmental Statement

26 Regulating the environment 26www.community.buckfastleigh.org UN guidance United Nations Brundtland Commission ‘Sustainable development’ Rio Summit, Agenda 21 EU Law EC Directives Habitats, Waste, Incineration, Landfill, etc. etc. etc. etc. UK Law DEFRA Transposes EC law into UK law Regulation The Environment Agency Health Protection Agency Environmental Health Officers ‘Precautionary principle’ “In order to protect the environment, the precautionary approach shall be widely applied by States according to their capabilities. Where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, lack of full scientific certainty shall not be used as a reason for postponing cost-effective measures to prevent environmental degradation.” – Rio Summit

27 Health Impact Assessment 27www.community.buckfastleigh.org “In relation to potential harms, authors report that some of the constituent emissions that make-up bottom ash have been investigated in connection with cancer and birth defects… Authors report that ‘the existence of less information on solid residues compared to emissions to air should not be taken to imply that solid residues are of less concern. Instead, it highlights a need for further research…’ (p.256) The authors also advocate for further investigation into the potential exposure to contaminants following re- use of municipal solid waste incinerator ash under conditions specific to the UK.” “Based on the evidence review it is important to note that “absence of evidence of risk” should never be confused with, or taken as, “evidence of absence of risk” (WHO 2007) and it is proposed that a cautionary approach within a risk management framework is adopted when determining any planning controls and determining the application.” A study co-ordinated by Devon PCT for the Whitecleave Quarry Development.

28 28www.community.buckfastleigh.org “The IBA does not pose any environmental or ecological problems.” Source: Precautionary principle?

29 Is it legal? Who will challenge it? Who will enforce it? Using the ‘precautionary principle’? 29www.community.buckfastleigh.org Lawful activity Unlawful activity Vigilant citizens & active elected representatives!

30 The IBA ‘Scamorama’ 30www.community.buckfastleigh.org ‘End of Waste’ ‘Chemical Substance’ Vigilant citizens & active elected representatives! EC Waste Framework Directive: designed to protect human health and the environment EU REACH chemical regulation: designed to protect human health and the environment Can we say it is no longer waste but not register it? Who will challenge us? Expediency

31 LARAC on IBA ‘recycling’ 31www.community.buckfastleigh.org “not all of the bottom ash is suitable for inclusion as a secondary aggregate, with performance ranging between 10% and up to 40% of the bottom ash currently not utilised for recycling and sent for landfill disposal.” “…there continues to be a threat that it may have to be treated as hazardous waste. To increase the rate of landfill tax on this material would significantly increase costs for local authorities.” SOURCE: LARAC - Consultation Response – Modernisation of landfill tax legislation, July 2009 “LARAC suggests that further research is undertaken to establish the market conditions and feasibility of recovering bottom ash and the potential environmental and financial impact on the municipal waste sector.”

32 Please don’t tax IBA! 32www.community.buckfastleigh.org “LARAC would support the development of standards that could be applied to waste materials, CLOs [Compost Like Output] and incinerator bottom ash to determine their suitability as a product for daily cover and site engineering, or their inert nature, providing that the testing required were not sufficiently onerous and increase costs.”

33 What is ‘inert’ waste? 33www.community.buckfastleigh.org “ ‘inert waste’ means waste that does not undergo any significant physical, chemical or biological transformations. Inert waste will not dissolve, burn or otherwise physically or chemically react, biodegrade or adversely affect other matter with which it comes into contact in a way likely to give rise to environmental pollution or harm human health. The total leachability and pollutant content of the waste and the ecotoxicity of the leachate must be insignificant, and in particular not endanger the quality of surface water and/or groundwater” EC Landfill Directive

34 So let’s just call it ‘inert’? 34www.community.buckfastleigh.org “[The Whitecleave Quarry] planning application is predicated on the presumption that IBA is inert” – Ben Jennings County Waste Manager (internal Devon County Council memorandum, September 2011) MVV’s position: IBA is inert The ESA’s (Environmental Services Association) position: IBA is “essentially inert” The regulator’s position (Environment Agency): it is up to the producer to decide whether it is inert or not The government’s position (DEFRA): IBA is NOT inert Position stated in French court of appeal ruling: IBA is NOT inert

35 What goes into the quarry void? 35www.community.buckfastleigh.org “It is imperative that the operation in the void space needs to be as flexible as possible to allow for the movement within the area of the 4 types of material being used – the Dolerite, IBA, C&D activity and the infilling operation with inert product.” – MVV planning application

36 Is it a ‘dump’ or landfill? 36www.community.buckfastleigh.org “ ‘landfill’ means a waste disposal site for the deposit of the waste onto or into land (i.e. underground), including: - …a permanent site (i.e. more than one year) which is used for temporary storage of waste, but excluding: - …storage of waste prior to recovery or treatment for a period less than three years as a general rule, or - storage of waste prior to disposal for a period less than one year” ?? Source: EC Landfill Directive

37 Welcome to ‘distributed landfill’ 37www.community.buckfastleigh.org “To the best of our knowledge IBA is currently classed as waste throughout its life-cycle.” – Health & Safety Executive “[the] Agency is working closely with industry and government to overcome perceived barriers and encourage the re-use and recovery of waste and avoid lengthy and costly “is it waste?” discussions and arguments.” – Source: Environment Agency internal document “Household recycling: Includes materials collected and sent for recycling by local authorities… but incinerator bottom ash is counted under incinerated waste, regardless of the final destination.” - DEFRA

38 The Environment Agency 38www.community.buckfastleigh.org “…we are in the process of gathering evidence on standards the material meets, markets it may be able to exploit, and most importantly any potential impacts on human health and the environment.”

39 Environmental Services Association 39www.community.buckfastleigh.org “We have reviewed the document and have no comments on the content…. We would like to review the progress with the sampling and testing of IBA in about 6 months from the start of its implementation in January Please let me know if this is acceptable.” “The development of an end-of-waste position for incinerator bottom ash remains unfinished… Government must continue support for the development of the Incinerator Bottom Ash Quality Protocol.”

40 40www.community.buckfastleigh.org “The refusal by the Environment Agency to disclose information as required by the Environmental Information Regulations 2004, resulted in a proposed hearing before an Information Tribunal in January The tribunal hearing was pre-empted when the Environment Agency released the information it held (some had been deleted/lost) and a consent order was agreed.” “the Environment Agency and the ESA had been in discussions about the classification of Incinerator Bottom Ash in relation to H14 ecotoxicity… The ESA advocated a testing methodology using 'direct testing' for H14 ecotoxicity hazard over conventional chemical testing for this hazardous property. The Environment Agency rejected the ESA's assertion that IBA should be classified as non- hazardous for H14 ecotoxicity.”

41 Incinerator Bottom Ash in South Devon? 41www.community.buckfastleigh.org  Are we dealing with a toxic dump? (or multiple dump sites around the county?)  Huge commercial and political incentives across industry and multiple government agencies to shut us up.  The precautionary principle on health and the environment is required under European law.  Absence of scientific evidence is not evidence of absence of harm under European law.  The ‘Waddenzee Principle’ on protection of South Hams SAC is required under European law.

42 42www.community.buckfastleigh.org “We are not naughty children and the state is not our parent. We should be the masters of public services and as such any dialogue between citizen and state must be on our terms. So shift the balance of power: ask questions, seek facts, challenge authority and don’t accept silence for an answer. In a true democracy the state has no right to remain silent.” Heather Brooke, The Silent State Keep Devon Clean & Green


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