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Another fine mess for Basildon
11:00am Wednesday 7th May 2014 in News
Leaked emails from County Hall show it has considered closing down every recycling centre it operates in south Essex and opening a new main tip in Pitsea instead.
The recycling centre for household waste would be the second major rubbish depot to open in the borough, with an £800million waste plant being built in Courtauld Road, Basildon.
But campaigners across Basildon say it is a tip too far and say shutting local centres will only lead to more flytipping.
John Dornan, councillor responsible for environment at Basildon Council, said: “We’ve got enough rubbish being dumped in Basildon, we don’t want any more. We will fight to protect the borough.
“Of course we do create our own waste because we’re one of the biggest authorities in Essex. It’s right that we’ve got to have some sort of facility, but I think Courtauld Road is enough.
"If people have to drive 15 miles just to get to their local tip, there is going to be rubbish flying everywhere.
Essex County Council has got to come up with a strategy which suits everyone, not just the bigwigs at County Hall.”
The waste plant at Courtauld Road is designed to deal with 400,000 tonnes of black bag rubbish each year, but there are also plans to build a second facility on the site to handle 65,000 tonnes of food and garden waste a year.
Heard Environmental is also building a new waste recycling depot on land south of Terminus Drive, Pitsea, which is expected to handle 49,000 tonnes of waste a year.
An application to create an anaerobic waste digester at Marsh Farm, off the A13, in Vange, has also been submitted.
Rob Hill, of Davenants, Pitsea, has been campaigning against waste sites in the area for year, and said the latest plans were “crazy”.
He added: “Basildon and Pitsea always gets lumbered with these things, they’re not going to put it in Billericay or Stock where all the posh people live.
“People are not going to travel miles from their house to get rid of waste, they’re just going to dump it. It’s reducing out ability to recycle, and that’s something we are also told to do.
The more facilities we have available to us, the better we’re going to be at it.”
According to the leaked emails, Essex County Council is considering closing 12 of its 21 tips across the county in order to open three new ones in Pitsea, Maldon and Chigwell.
A spokesman for the county council said the proposals had been discussed but that there were currently no plans to close any recycling centres.
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