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From Keighley News, September 29th, 2018

KEIGHLEY MP John Grogan says he is “very hopeful” that an environmental permit for a controversial waste-to-energy incinerator plant in the town will be rejected. He was speaking after the Environment Agency received an application for a permit at the site, alongside the Aire Valley trunk road at Marley. “From my discussions with the agency my understanding is that the formal consultation period is likely to take place later in 2018 and a final decision could take up to a year,” said Mr Grogan.

“I am very hopeful that the agency will turn down the application.

“A similar application at Rivenhall in Essex was refused by the Environment Agency in 2016.

“It was ruled that the applicant did not demonstrate the use of best available practices to reduce emissions and the impact on the environment. The agency drew particular attention to the low stack height.”

He added: “I continue to lobby the Government to introduce an incinerator tax in next month’s budget, which could make the plans for an incinerator in Keighley uneconomic.”

Campaigners fighting the incinerator scheme said they were expecting the permit application and were ready to put forward their case.

“We have made plans with the Environment Agency to ensure we are adequately consulted allowing us to get our argument across,” said a spokesman for the campaign group, Aire Valley Against Incineration (AVAI).

“The permitting assessment is not a short process and we will advise people of the next steps as soon as we know them.

“Thanks as always to the public for its continued support.”

The Environment Agency confirmed it had received an application.

“We are currently checking that the application contains the necessary information to enable us to start our detailed assessment of the documents and to begin formal consultation,” it added.

“If it is not adequate, the applicant will be asked to provide the missing information. This is likely to take a few weeks.

“Once it is adequate for our assessment, we will start our consultation process.”

The application will be advertised, including in the press and on the agency’s website.

There will be an initial consultation period of 20 days, which will include a drop-in event in Keighley.

Opponents of the scheme say it will inflict harmful pollution on the Aire Valley and its surroundings, and will blight the landscape.

But applicant Endless Energy Ltd refutes the allegations, arguing that the facility will provide an environmentally-friendly form of energy, while conforming to strict European emissions standards.