St Albans villagers warned of traffic congestion caused by incinerator scheme

PUBLISHED: 06:12 01 October 2012 | UPDATED: 12:12 01 October 2012

ENVIRONMENTAL campaigners have warned St Albans villagers that local roads will be inundated with traffic should a controversial scheme for a neighbouring incinerator go ahead.

In about one month’s time, on Wednesday, October 24, a planning application for a massive incinerator will be considered by Herts county council’s (HCC) development control committee.

Veolia’s scheme seeks permission for demolition of a library at the HCC-owned New Barnfield site in Hatfield, to make way for an incinerator with 75m high emission flues, visible up to 15km away, to treat 380,000 tonnes of municipal, commercial and industrial waste a year.

Farmers in Colney Heath have joined the chorus of opposition against the incinerator, saying it is not suitable to build it near agricultural land between their village and Hatfield.

Paul Zukowskyj, executive member of Hatfield Against Incineration (HAI), said if approved, Colney Heath and London Colney residents would suffer further from traffic-clogged roads, particularly if lorries took short cuts along the likes of Coursers Road.

He said: “In terms of traffic movements, the proposed plant would clearly produce a lot – the application suggests 458 a day as an upper estimate. Since the major population centres of Herts are largely to the west of New Barnfield, virtually all of these traffic movements will involve either the A1(M) or the A414.

“There will also be a significant number on the M25, largely three-tonne articulated lorries from the transfer station serving Watford, Three Rivers and Dacorum.”

He went on: “Of the locally generated traffic, it is expected that local collection lorries will transfer waste directly to the plant rather than taking it to a transfer station first.

“That means for St Albans and Hertsmere, local bin lorries making their way along the A414 or A1(M).”

He warned that some trucks would also be carrying “fly ash” for processing at the hazardous landfill site in Cheshire.

Paul explained: “This truck will contain fly ash residues with highly toxic ash containing dioxins, heavy metals, furans and highly carcinogenic and poisonous substances on at least a daily basis.

“Residents and commuters who use the A414 and our already at-capacity rush hour motorway network can look forward to even more delays thanks to HCC’s fantastic solution to our waste problem.”

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