FLINTSHIRE Council has been updated on progress being made on an £800m incinerator being built in the county.
In April this year, Wheelabrator Technologies was appointed as the preferred bidder by the North Wales Residual Waste Treatment Project (NWRWTP) for a new Energy Recovery Facility on a site next to the Shotton Paper Mill on Deeside Industrial Park.
The site was occupied by railway sidings during the 1960s and 1970s and has been derelict for some time.
A partnership was formed to find a more sustainable solution to managing waste from North Wales, consisting of five local authorities – Flintshire, Denbighshire, Conwy, Anglesey and Gwynedd.
Speaking at a meeting on Wednesday, Colin Everett, chief executive of Flintshire Council said initial work on the site will begin in January.
“By 2019 we expect the site to be in the early waste transfer stage, and then fully up and running by 2020,” he said.
“By 2025 our target is to be recycling 70 per cent of our residual waste, [a figure] which was set by the Welsh Government.
“Looking at the big picture, we are achieving Welsh Government policy as well as our own here and we have had absolutely sterling support from the Government.
“This is a great benefit for Flintshire not just for employment benefit but also because of the energy by-product being produced locally.”
One issue raised at the meeting was the fact there would be more lorries using the roads in the area when the work begins in January.
Cllr Dennis Hutchinson said: “Lorries will go and find the easiest and cheapest way of getting to the site.
“The coast road is such a poor road when you get to Greenfield and then of course the A55 is in need of major improvements. My question is how many lorries are going to be out here a day?”
Steffan Owen, project manager for NWRWTP said: “In terms of numbers per day there will be about 30 or 40 vehicle movements to the site which will be refuse vehicles from Flintshire and then the transfer vehicles.
“Thirty or 40 vehicles is a very small number when you look at the local area.”
According to Mr Owen, one of the potential future benefits of the project for Flintshire Council is that if Wheelabrator exceeds a certain income level, then the council will also get a share of that income.
Council leader, Cllr Aaron Shotton, also suggested having a breeze block making facility on the site, which wasn’t ruled out but the practicalities of it were questioned.
In response, Mr Everett said: “In terms of the practicalities of having a facility on the site itself, I think the site may be a bit small to have this facility, so I’m unsure of the practicalities but it’s not something we’d rule out for the future.”