Success rate grows for waste planning approvals

Planning applications for waste facilities met with greater success last year compared with the year before, according to latest research.

Out of nearly 600 planning decisions in 2011 for new waste plants or extensions to existing sites in Great Britain, 18% were refused or withdrawn – an improvement on the previous year when 25% were refused or withdrawn.

Analysis undertaken by BDS Marketing Research estimates that 81% of applications made by waste companies were given the green light.

The study also showed a move away from landfill with only four extensions to void space at existing sites, providing an extra 7.5 million cu m of void in total. No new landfill sites were granted consent, although a proposal was submitted for a major storage facility.

The majority of planning consents granted during 2011 related to recycling facilities, including MRFs with nearly 200 schemes approved – an increase on the previous year of 150 permissions.

In addition, more than 50 consents for anaerobic digestion plants were given. Some of these involved small agricultural schemes, but SITA, Shanks, Viridor and Cory were also successful in this sector.

Despite the relative success of the industry over the past year, more than 300 applications for waste management facilities hang in the balance. Most of these were submitted in 2011, but some remain undecided from as far back as 2009.

Maxine Perella

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