Plans burn out for incinerator in Harpenden and Luton

The campaign group are pleased that the Harpenden incinerator will not be going ahead. Picture: Supp

The campaign group are pleased that the Harpenden incinerator will not be going ahead. Picture: Supplied - Credit: Archant

The controversial Harpenden Luton incinerator will not be going ahead, it has been confirmed this week.

Hyde Parish Council has said that the option agreement for the proposed equipment on the site to the north of Chiltern Green Road has lapsed. An option agreement buys developers a period of time in which to go ahead with their proposal.

This means that the developer, energy company Emsrayne, would now not be able to build an incinerator without a new agreement.

Emsrayne had applied to Central Bedfordshire Council for permission to build the Lea Bank Energy Park at New Mill End, north of Harpenden and west of Kimpton.

Campaigners Stop The Harpenden Luton Incinerator were concerned that the plant would be 15 storeys high, as big as Harpenden High Street, and if approved would burn 500,000 tonnes of residual waste, non-hazardous material left over from the recycling process, every year, which residents worry will create CO2.

At the time, Kinsbourne Green resident Stuart Ball said: “My family and I live less than two miles from the site so I am primarily concerned about the effect of the emissions on our health.”

Other proposals for the Luton Hoo site are in their early stages.

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Chairman of the Stop The Harpenden Luton Incinerator Tim Armstrong-Taylor said: “I am delighted to say that it is all over now. We will be meeting to discuss what happens next.

“Thanks to all those who have given their support to our campaign. Together we beat it.”

For over two years the incinerator proposal has been a hotly debated issue, with Hitchin and Harpenden MP Bim Afolami campaigning against it since it was first proposed in 2018.

He said: “We are in the middle of a climate emergency which everybody is now waking up to.

“This proposal would have had serious implications for air quality and health for local residents. Quite simply, this proposal was unacceptable.”

The MP added that he felt that from the detrimental environmental impact to the extensive noise and traffic disruption, it would have “blighted Lower Luton Road” and the he could not see any positive aspect of the plans for Hertfordshire residents.