COMMONS

National Policy Statement for Hazardous Waste must be improved

14 December 2011

The National Policy Statement that will guide decision-making on applications for large scale hazardous waste infrastructure must be amended to keep costs to a minimum and reduce the risk of flooding, say MPs.

The National Policy Statement that will guide decision-making on applications for large scale hazardous waste infrastructure must be amended to keep costs to a minimum and reduce the risk of flooding, say MPs.

Launching a report on the draft policy statement, Anne McIntosh, chair of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee said “Industry investment in new infrastructure is essential if the UK is to meet its obligations to dispose of hazardous waste in a more environmentally friendly way.

“Planners will rely on this policy statement to determine applications, but at present it contains ambiguities which could lead to lengthy and expensive legal argument. There is a real risk that if this NPS is not amended it will actually discourage developers from investing in the infrastructure that we need.


“As well as providing greater clarity in the policy statement itself, we call on Defra to look for opportunities to reduce bureaucracy and duplication in the planning process.

“We are also concerned that the NPS does not set out a sufficiently robust approach to the issue of flooding. We have recommended that the Environment Agency be given the power to veto applications on ground of flood risk.”

MPs also call on Defra to provide further opportunities for local communities to propose mitigation measures to reduce the local impact of projects.

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