D-Day for controversial Wearside recycling plant plan

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A DECISION date has been set for a controversial waste recycling plant which caused uproar among neighbours

North East Waste Productions is seeking retrospective planning permission for its new storage area and the installation of industrial machinery at its centre on Hetton Lyons Industrial Estate.

Objectors say the development will cause problems with noise, smell, litter, dust and heavy vehicles and the Echo reported how more than 350 residents signed a petition against the development.

A meeting has now been scheduled to discuss the planning application on Tuesday when councillors are expected to make a decision on the development.

Kay Rowham, one of the objectors, said: “We will be out in force at the meeting and hopefully that will show the strength of feeling.”

She added: “There is a lot of concern, not only from residents. We have signatures from visiting walkers, fishermen and birdwatchers to Hetton Country Park, which is near the site.”

North East Waste Productions’ operation sorts and stores construction and excavation waste. Storage and processing equipment is on site and the firm also uses mobile crushing equipment.

Councillors originally considered the application last month, but it was deferred for further consideration. A site visit by councillors has taken place.

The company has, however, striven to reassure residents over issues such as waste reception and handling, traffic management and noise control. All waste handled at the site is inert.

Marco Muia, director of consultants Oaktree Environmental, which helped produce a detailed design and access statement for the project, said the expansion was vital in order for the firm to keep up with demand.

He said: “The rise in landfill costs and the introduction of the landfill tax has increased the need for recycling and recovering operations, to reclaim a wide range of wastes and reusable products.

“Current UK recycling rates are low, but it is anticipated that in excess of 90 per cent of certain projects managed by the applicant could be recycled, and the site could provide employment for a further four people.”

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