NORMANTON has become a “dumping ground” for Yorkshire’s waste.
That is the claim from environmentalists after plans for a new recycling centre that will employ up to 150 people, were approved yesterday, becoming the town’s third site to deal with unwanted goods.
The centre, which will replace SAM Transport and Distribution warehouse on Tyler Close, will see nearly 310 tonnes of municiple, commercial and industrial waste sorted there every day – up to 62,500 tonnes of waste each year could be “hazardous”.
In April Healthcare Environmental Services was given the go-ahead to deal with as much as 34,000 tonnes of medical waste at its site on Loscoe Close.
The town already has Welbeck landfill site and household waste recycling centre at its entrance.
Environmental campaigner Paul Dainton, of Residents Against Toxic Scheme (RATS) said: “This is unbelievable. We have already talked about Normanton becoming the cesspit of the waste industry, and now we seem to have all of Yorkshire’s rubbish being sent her to handle.
“How much more can they put in Normanton? What is next – nuclear?”
Wakefield Council’s planning committee approved the latest scheme, despite concerns from Coun Elaine Blezard.
She objected over fears of air quality, and raised questions over its proximity to the clinical waste site and Welbeck.
But other members were happy with the strict guidelines in place to ensure minimum damage would be caused to the environment.
A report produced for the committee said the new centre would sort, store and transfer waste from the “wider region”, including hazardous items described as “flammable” and “combustible”.
It said around 160 vehicles would travel in and out of the site, 24 hours a day, but the meeting heard how it was no more than the existing site attracted and the level of risk from the site was no more than that posed by a typical industrial warehouses.
Graeme Parkin, operation director for Silver Lining Group, said it chose Normanton for the recycling centre due to its good transport links.
He added: “The company plans to develop the site into an eco friendly operation by investing in renewable technologies and therefore create a site with a negative carbon footprint.
“If any environmental groups are interested in our operation we would be happy to invite them to the site to see the operation.”