Planning application for Beddington Energy Recovery Facility submitted
Posted 31 Jul 2012
The London Borough of Sutton has now received a planning application from Viridor to build an Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) at its existing landfill and recycling site on Beddington Lane, Sutton. The planning application also proposes revised plans for the restoration of the existing landfill site.
Submission of the planning application follows a comprehensive community consultation programme aimed at engaging with the local community about the project by providing information about the proposed development and communication channels for questions to be asked and feedback to be submitted.
Public consultation activities included:
Distribution of over 52,000 newsletters in March to provide information about the project and publicise the public exhibition events taking place across the four boroughs.
A dedicated online hub (www.viridor.co.uk/beddington-erf) was also launched in March allowing 24/7 access to information as well as an interactive Q&A and feedback section.
A video about the project available on the online hub and on YouTube
A dedicated twitter account @TalkERF_SLondon
Eight public exhibition events where technical experts as well as Viridor members of the project team were on hand to talk about the proposals in more detail and answer questions
Presentation of proposals and updates at local community meetings
Site visits to Viridor’s join-venture Energy Recovery Facility near Heathrow airport
As a result of feedback received from local residents, statutory and non-statutory consultees, and further evolution of the design of the proposals in response to environmental impact assessment and design testing, the following changes have been made:
The design of the ERF building has been changed to remove the proposed curved roofplate, which helps to minimise the apparent bulk of the building in some views.
A “brown roof” has been added to the building hosting the site offices and visitor centre, which will bring biodiversity and drainage benefits.
A 15m reduction in the proposed stack height to 85m from 100m following final results from air quality monitoring and the results of computer modelling and assessment.
Materials for the ERF building have now been selected, using high quality products and finishes, with colours and textures that provide the best appearance in both close and long views.
From the restoration point of view, a taller and wider bund is to be provided at the western interface of the ERF with the wet grasslands. This will provide better screening of activity at the base of the building than the previous design, and the extra width will provide a better platform for an appropriate planting scheme to integrate with the adjacent habitats.
A more detailed drainage scheme has been prepared with new ponds. These will be designed to complement the biodiversity aims of the area, with reed beds to help to filter the water before release into the wet grassland areas, and other planting to provide nature conservation benefits.
Ian John, Viridor’s head of planning, said: “We have been proactive in engaging with the local community seeking their views and the feedback received has been taken into account in the development of our application.
“The Environmental Statement that accompanies the planning application contains the assessments carried out by independent experts of the potential impacts associated with the proposals. The results show that there will be no significant adverse impacts to the local community or the environment from the proposed ERF.”
Ordinarily, Sutton Council will have up to 16 weeks to determine the application, during which time they will conduct their own consultation in order to assess the application and make a decision. However, the process is expected to take longer than 16 weeks to conclude, and a decision is expected to be made in early 2013.
If the application is approved, work on site will start soon after the decision has been made and construction and commissioning would take about three years to complete.
Individuals and local organisations who wish to register an interest in the statutory consultation to be carried out by the council can do so by emailing email@example.com.