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No Grounds For Appeal
South Lanarkshire Council have said there are no legal grounds to appeal the approval of a waste processing plant in Whistleberry Road, Hamilton.
Campaigners are now looking at making representations to the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) in a bid to stop the plant getting an operator’s licence.
The council had refused permission for the Clean Power plant processing waste using pyrolysis in May last year. But the decision was overturned by a Scottish Government- appointed Reporter last month.
The Hamilton Energy Recovery Action Group (HERAG) made up of Whitehill residents hoped that the council would pay for an appeal through the Court of Session.
However, after taking legal advice, Geraldine McCann, head of Administration and Legal Services, says that will not be possible.
She said: “The council’s planning services and legal services have considered the Reporter’s decision and have also taken external legal advice from a QC. Grounds for appealing any decision are restricted by law and, regretfully, with regards to this case, there are no grounds to appeal the decision.”
Phil Sykes, who is chair of the HERAG group, says going to SEPA is the next step.
Councillor Monica Lennon, who has been helping HERAG with their fight against the waste plant said: “Unless the decision contains a mistake or failed to consider something relevant it looks like there won’t be grounds for a legal challenge. The health impacts must be considered by SEPA and I will do all I can to work with the community to stop this development from getting an operator’s licence.”
The precise process which is to be used at the plant is new and untested in the UK. A spokeswoman for Clean Power Properties Ltd said: “The Energy Recovery Centre will provide a much-needed alternative to landfill and incineration and, instead, captures recyclables for reuse and renewable energy. The centre will create 150 jobs during the construction phase with a further 34 direct jobs .”