Local MPs demand action taken at the Waste4Fuel site
PUBLISHED: 17:31 10 September 2014 | UPDATED: 17:31 10 September 2014
The three MPs are calling on the Environment Agency to take urgent steps to clear the site
The MPs for Orpington, Old Bexley and Sidcup, and Bromley have joined forces in the fight against the rubbish mountain at Waste4Fuel in Orpington.
James Brokenshire, Bob Neill and Jo Johnson have pressed for the Environment Agency to take urgent steps to see that the rubbish mountain at Waste4Fuel is removed as soon as possible.
The call from the local MPs came during a meeting with Environment Secretary Liz Truss. The meeting was to discuss the site in Sevenoaks way. The abandoned site is thought to still have 15,000 tonnes of waste.
All three called on the Environment Agency to take further action to remove the mountain of waste left on the site after it was abandoned by Waste4Fuel.
The MPs asked the Secretary of State to consider imposing tougher financial obligations on firms wishing to apply for a licence to operate a waste transfer site like Waste4Fuel. Under their proposal, firms would have to stump up cash for a security bond in advance. This could then be used to pay for the clearance of the site and other clean up obligations should they fail to comply with their licence.
The Secretary of State agreed to raise the MPs’ concerns with the chief executive of the Environment Agency and ask that all options to resolve the situation be considered. She also said she would examine what further changes to the law may be needed.
Commenting in a joint statement, the three MPs said: “We welcome the positive response from the Secretary of State to the continuing concerns of local residents. It is simply unacceptable for the local community to be left with what amounts to a legalised fly tip on their doorsteps when an operator like Waste4Fuel does a midnight flit. We welcome the commitment to press the Environment Agency to consider all options to address the current problem and consider changes to waste regulations.
“It cannot be right that firms can cash in on waste dumped on their sites and then seemingly walk away scot free from the problems they have created. Obligating those seeking a licence to take out security bonds would help reduce this risk and ensure that those operating these sites foot the bill when things go wrong.
“There are serious questions which still need to be answered by the Environment Agency as to why they allowed things to go on this long and get this bad. We will continue to press for the site to be cleared as quickly as possible and those responsible for this serious problem to be held to account.”