Thursday, April 26, 2012
Ongoing saga of Gilberdyke Tip problems continue
Yet another week of complaints and personally witnessing horrendous smell, HGV movements and litter associated with the Gilberdyke Landfill Site – and as more information comes to light, an increasing frustration with the Environment Agency.
The whole sorry saga of the Gilberdyke tip has been unbelievable and I cannot comprehend how that over the past 18 months a tip operator could come in, and through its selfish actions cause so much misery and suffering for local residents, with smell, vehicle movements and mess. AND all this right under the noses of the Environment Agency and the East Riding of Yorkshire Council, both of which have been reluctant to act.
The Environment Agency in particular, who have responsibility for day to day monitoring of the Tip, waste volumes, and smell need to answer an awful lot of questions as to how and why they have allowed this diabolical situation to develop.
My personal feelings are that once the volume of waste on the Tip became greater than that allowed in the height and contours of the planning consent we had a serious problem. To argue about resettlement levels and post settlement levels is quite ridiculous – how would a height condition be imposed in 25 years’ time? If the height was above consented levels would the operator be required to uncap the Tip and removed waste at that point – I think not!
For quite a while now residents have been telling me that their priority was time related and they wanted the Tip closed and capped off as soon as possible, the HGV movements to and from the site to stop, and a suitable gas management system installed to deal with landfill gases. Gilberdyke Tip operators City Plant Ltd. have put up a website, delivered a glossy leaflet to residents, and is planning to hold an exhibition.
But for me this is far too late in the process. If, as I suspect this a cynical attempt at some form of contrition then it will not wash with me, the damage has already been done. It should not be lost on City Plant Ltd that the delivery of the leaflet with its disingenuous statements particularly around numbers of vehicle movements, precipitated further direct action by the residents, when they effectively blocked the access road recently.
I certainly congratulate the residents and particularly Newport Parish Council Chairman Roy Hunt, for it is their direct and indirect actions we have seen over the months that has brought the commitment from City Plant to fill and cap off the site. But it is after far too much and far too late in the process, we should never have seen so much waste entering the site and the Environment Agency has been found seriously wanting as they are the regulatory body responsible for allowing this debacle to develop.
When City Plant Ltd.’s planning application to ‘regularise the height and profile of the site’ is submitted to the ERYC the opportunity must be taken to impose a time condition on the site to ensure no further waste is permitted to enter the site after a given date whether the site is deemed ‘full’ or not by City Plant.
I don’t want to see any more ‘ifs or buts’ from City Plant Ltd, no more excuses and no more applications for time or volume extensions for the Tip. The sooner this sorry saga, where a company with very few actual assets, but with well-heeled directors, has descended upon and subjected a community to sheer misery comes to an end the better.
I urge the residents to continue their actions, early next week Roy Hunt and I are yet again meeting with the Environment Agency senior managers. We will be pushing for action to have the Tip completed, capped off and a suitable gas management system installed much sooner than the timeframe being put forward by City Plant Ltd.