Welsh minister to decide Llanwern incinerator plan
A WELSH minister will have the final decision over whether a plan for a city incinerator is given planning permission – despite an inquiry into the issue this summer.
On July 9 an eight-day inquiry by the Planning Inspectorate will begin into an appeal by Veolia over Newport planning committee's refusal for permission for a waste burner at Llanwern Steelworks.
However Prosiect Gwyrdd, the consortium that Veolia is bidding for a waste-contract for, is set to announce its preferred bidder months before that, in February.
The Welsh environment minister and Newport East AM John Griffiths has been ruled out from deciding on the appeal as it resides in his constituency.
A Welsh Government spokeswoman said the Welsh ministers decided that, as the proposal is a major development that could have a wide impact beyond the local area, the appeal should be determined by a minister rather than an inspector.
If the development site had been outside his constituency, Mr Griffiths would have been the appropriate minister to do the task, she said.
However as it is within his constituency he is precluded from taking the decision under the ministerial code, but it is not yet known who will do it instead or when the decision will be made.
The inquiry at Newport Civic Centre is scheduled for eight days but may be shorter or could be extended.
A spokesman for Prosiect Gwyrdd – a consortium of South Wales councils which two firms including Veolia are bidding for a contract to handle non-recyclable waste from – said a preferred bidder is set to be announced in February.
The other bidder is Viridor, which has already started building its incinerator in Cardiff.