The Transport Minister has been quizzed on the implications of legal action to force the clean-up of an immense illegal waste site on plans to seize nearby land in order to build a road.
Last summer, it emerged that more than half a million tonnes of material was buried without permission in and around a licensed recycling site at the Mobouy Road on the outskirts of Derry.
It later emerged that the route of the proposed A6 road scheme - a dual carriageway from Derry to Dungiven and a bypass around Dungiven - skirts the illegal waste site.
Major environmental concerns have been expressed after the scale of illegal dumping became apparent.
Green MLA Steven Agnew asked Transport Minister Danny Kennedy: “Given a valid enforcement notice exists that requires the offender to remove the illegal waste which lies directly in the line of the proposed A6 road, to detail the implications of vesting land subject to such a legal charge; and whether his Department will be liable for the cost of removal, decontamination and repatriation of the waste.”
Mr Kennedy replied: “Should I decide to proceed with this scheme, I would confirm the Direction Order immediately to protect the footprint of the scheme from future development.
“The vesting orders would remain in draft awaiting Executive approval of funding to construct the scheme; and if the illegal landfill is still present when the road is being constructed, I am content that the installation of appropriately engineered measures to contain the illegal waste would ensure that the necessary compensatory floodplain could be constructed as planned.”