Incinerator sites still not revealed

PEOPLE in Suffolk are today none the wiser about potential sites for a controversial incinerator after a freedom of information request failed to elicit an answer.

PEOPLE in Suffolk are today none the wiser about potential sites for a controversial incinerator after a freedom of information request failed to elicit an answer.

Back in January, Suffolk County Council announced that Great Blakenham had been chosen as the preferred site for a controversial £600m incinerator out of six shortlisted locations.

However county chiefs sparked concerns of a lack of transparency by claiming they could not name the other sites due to potential legal issues.

The Evening Star submitted a formal freedom of information request (FOI) in a bid to learn the identity of the five other shortlisted sites.

However, despite the 20-day time limit expiring, county chiefs say they are not in a position to give an answer as they are still “consulting with landowners”.

The consultation is due to be completed within the next couple of weeks although it is not clear whether the council will then reveal the site locations.

Most Read

A spokeswoman for Suffolk County Council said the five other shortlisted sites are all owned privately.

She said: “In accordance with FOI guidelines we have been consulting with the land owners before we can release any of their details.

“This process has taken longer than the 20 day reply time for this FOI request.

“We hope to have the consultation complete by mid March and then can address the request.”

Peter Welham, head of anti-incinerator campaign group SAIL, said the council should come clean with the people of Suffolk.

He said: “They [the council] talk about an open process with this consultation and of keeping the people informed, but I think this is a very poor show.

“They seem to be operating behind closed doors and that is not good for democracy.”

Information obtainable under the Freedom of Information Act is subject to a number of exemptions such as sensitive personal information or information affecting commercial interests.

n. Do you believe the council should come clean on the shortlisted sites for the incinerator? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter