INDAVER Ireland has rejected claims by Green Party Senator Dan Boyle that incineration is no longer Government policy, pointing out that Mr Boyle’s own party leader has admitted there is a need for two incinerators in the country.
On the opening day of what is the second full hearing on Belgian company Indaver’s plans for a toxic waste incinerator at Ringaskiddy, Mr Boyle said that while incineration had been Government policy, that was not the case any more.
"Incineration had been the Government’s preferred policy for waste disposal. It was considered cheap and easy and quick. In terms of policy making that ticks a lot of boxes, even if it causes problems and rides roughshod over the wishes of a community.
"Incineration is no longer a preferred disposal method. Mechanical and biological treatment have become the preferred options and the Government has also initiated a review of best practice."
However, Indaver pointed out that the leader of Mr Boyle’s party, Environment Minister John Gormley, said as late as October 2007 that Ireland requires "no more than two incinerators" to deal with waste that cannot be recycled or processed and it would need to incinerate 400,000 tonnes of waste a year by 2016.
Elsewhere in his submission yesterday, Mr Boyle claimed Indaver had itself admitted that a new incineration levy proposed under the Programme for Government would make its project unviable.
Munster MEP Kathy Sinnott said Cork Harbour, where the incinerator would be located and where the National Maritime College is located, had the potential to be a "thriving, prosperous, integrated harbour, with research and development integrating transport, tourism, leisure activities like bathing and water sports, and all the other businesses that thrive in a busy setting.
"In creating this economy The National Maritime College is the critical key. If it is allowed to expand and develop, it has the potential for cutting edge research and a leading international university," she said. "An incinerator on the doorstep of the college is not appropriate to the potential development of the site. The Ringaskiddy/Cork Harbour site is the wrong site and to proceed with this site will rob Munster, Ireland and Europe of a valuable and irreplaceable maritime asset and thousands of sustainable jobs."