Incinerator challenge in High Court today


Anti-incinerator campaigners are launching a legal challenge today against the decision to award planning permission for the Republic's first toxic waste incinerator at Ringaskiddy, Co Cork.

The High Court is to hear an application from 11 residents of the Ringaskiddy area for a judicial review of the decision of An Bord Pleanála to grant planning permission for the incinerator.

In January the board went against the recommendation of its own planning inspector when it decided to grant Indaver, a Belgian-owned waste management firm, permission for the plant, which will deal with 100,000 tonnes of hazardous waste a year.

The 11 residents and Ringaskiddy and District Residents' Association, are seeking to overturn the planning decision. They claim their rights to fair procedures have been infringed, along with respect for family life and bodily integrity. They will also claim today that the board breached provisions of the Constitution, European law and the European Convention on Human Rights.

The decision of An Bord Pleanála followed a four-week oral hearing, overseen by its inspector Mr Philip Jones. He recommended against giving planning approval. But the board voted nine to one against his recommendation and to approve the proposal, citing national waste policy which has prioritised incineration.

Local residents have undertaken a major fundraising campaign, to fund its legal challenge, which could cost up to 500,000.

Last year An Bord Pleanála granted Indaver permission for the country's first municipal waste incinerator, at Carranstown, Co Meath, close to the Boyne Valley. The board went against the recommendation of its inspector in that case as well.