Council backs new waste plan

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Lisburn’s council is backing plans for a regional treatment plant aimed at cutting landfill and avoiding unnecessary costs for Northern Ireland ratepayers.

Local authorities face significant fines for failing to meet

2020 waste management targets and against that backdrop the arc21 Waste Management Group, of which Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council is a member, is pursuing plans for a £240m private sector investment to help bring councils’ waste treatment into line with European best practice.

The arc21 proposal is to co-locate a Mechanical Biological Treatment plant and an Energy from Waste plant at Hightown Quarry outside Mallusk.

The proposal is currently with the Planning Appeals Commission for consideration and five of the six arc21 member councils, including LCCC, have already voted to support continuation of the process to a scheduled independent hearing.

LCCC is represented on arc2 1 by Alderman James Tinsley, Councillor Owen Gawith and Councillor Luke Poots.

In recognising what he called the need for councils to act both locally and regionally in supporting the need for a strategic waste infrastructure project, Alderman Tinsley added: “This is a crucial problem that requires a regional solution.

“To put it bluntly, we cannot continue to rely on landfill as a waste disposal option. We recognise there is a massive gap in the system so are planning now to put the proper infrastructure in place.

“Northern Ireland needs modern waste facilities.

“The arc21 proposals will increase recycling rates, generate green energy and reduce the likelihood of environmental crime.

“Given the level of investment proposed, with the creation of jobs, and the boost this could give the local economy, it would be regrettable if this project does not proceed.”