Gloucester incinerator cancellation 'would cost £100m'

Artist's impression of the Javelin Park incinerator Image copyright Urbaser Balfour Beatty
Image caption The incinerator is due to be built on land at Javelin Park near Gloucester

Cancelling a contract for a £500m waste incinerator near Gloucester would cost up to £100m, it has been revealed.

Urbaser Balfour Beatty was granted permission for the scheme earlier this month, following a public enquiry. Gloucestershire County Council planners had previously rejected the plans.

Labour politicians want the contract for Javelin Park cancelled.

The Conservative group, which signed the deal, said cancelling the contract would be a "catastrophe".

Mark Hawthorne, leader of Gloucestershire County Council, has criticised the Labour group for trying to get the contract cancelled without knowing the costs that could potentially be levied on the taxpayer.

But Lesley Williams, leader of the Labour group, said the party had been asking for the information for years with no luck.

'Provide proof'

Labour's move has been backed by a petition set up by GlosVain, an alliance of town and parish councils, individuals and organisations that oppose waste incineration.

The group said scrapping the contract and using alternative waste facilities in Gloucestershire or in neighbouring counties could save between £232m and £364m more over 25 years than the incinerator is predicted to save.

GlosVain's chair Sue Oppenheimer called on the Conservatives to provide proof of the £100m calculation for scrapping the contract.

In a statement the Conservative group said the figure had been arrived at both as a result of compensation for breaking the contract, and as a result of the extra landfill costs, legal fees and waste taxes the council would be forced to pay.

The statement claimed the current contract would, in contrast, save taxpayers more than £150m.

A petition backing calls for the incinerator contract to be ripped up has been signed by more than 1,300 people in six days.

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