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Europe called in to probe costs of incinerator
8:20am Monday 14th January 2013 in News
THE European Commission will carry out an investigation into the cost of the proposed Hartlebury incinerator after a petition was submitted by a Wyre Forest District councillor opposed to the plans.
Labour’s Nigel Knowles sent the petition in just his name to the Committee on Petitions of the European Parliament in Brussels so they could look into the cost of the project.
He received a letter back from the committee, which said the issues he raised were “admissible in accordance with the Rules of Procedure of the European Parliament”, adding the subject matter fell within the “sphere of activities of the European Union”.
It went on: “The committee began its examination of your petition and decided to ask the European Commission to conduct a preliminary investigation of the various aspects of the issue.”
The letter said more information was needed for a thorough examination of the case, however, adding the committee would continue with its examination of the petition after it received the further details.
Mr Knowles said he would be sending more information to the committee soon.
“My petition to the committee is to investigate the funding of the project,” Mr Knowles said.
“They’ve indicated that they will investigate the cost of the plan for the incinerator. I’m relieved that they will be looking into it.
“The economics are all wrong.
I’m ready to send in more evidence.”
He added he submitted the petition before Worcestershire County Council delayed its decision last month on whether to press ahead with the £120 million incinerator, amid concerns over the cost.
Critics, including Mr Knowles, believe the total bill to taxpayers during the lifetime of the contract could reach £1 billion but that has been rejected by the county council.