Norfolk

King's Lynn waste incinerator awarded £91m PFI credits

Energy from waste incinerator
Image caption The waste incinerator would be built at Saddlebow in King's Lynn

A controversial waste incinerator in King's Lynn has been awarded £91m in private finance (PFI) credits by environment secretary Caroline Spelman.

Objectors have raised concerns over the impact of emissions on health and the environment from the Saddlebow scheme.

In a letter to Norfolk County Council Mrs Spelman said the "unusually high level of public concern" did not prevent her granting the credits.

The credits come into operation once the project has been built.

Bill Borrett, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for environment and waste, said: "We are pleased the Government has decided to support this project.

"It will substantially reduce the cost of a proposed new service for dealing with Norfolk residents' waste, making it excellent value for money - and very good news for the county's council taxpayers."

Norfolk County Council gave the incinerator the go-ahead in March 2011.

'Extremely disappointed'

The Borough Council of King's Lynn and West Norfolk, Norwich City Council, some local MPs and residents have condemned the building of the incinerator.

South-West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss said: "I am extremely disappointed by this decision. The scheme in its current format does not command the support of local residents, it is too large and in the wrong location.

"Sixty five thousand people voted against it at last year's referendum and I have repeatedly advocated the creation of a pan Norfolk waste operation to deal with waste more efficiently. I will continue to press for a rethink in the planning process."

Mike Knights from the Farmers' Campaign against the incinerator said they would continue to fight against the incinerator being built.

"It's very vulnerable now to a judicial review challenge which I fully expect will happen and should be able to reverse it. We'll have to continue, as we were expecting to, to fight it at every step."

The leader of King's Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council, Nick Daubney, said they would challenge Mrs Spelman's decision.

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