Minister backs plans to scrap Strathfoyle incinerator

Mark H. Durkan.
Mark H. Durkan.

Moves to scrap plans for a £500million waste incinerator on the outskirts of Derry have been called the “correct decision” by the North’s Envrionment Minister.

The North West Regional Waste Managment Group (NWRWMG)’s joint committee met on Wednesday ) and said it was scrapping the plans for the £500m waste project at Strathfoyle due to uncertainty over its delivery.

A spokesperson for the group - which repersents seven North West councils including Derry’s local authority - said: “The NWRWMG’s Joint Committee has agreed to recommend to the Group’s constituent Councils that they do not continue with the procurement of the North West Region Waste Infrastructure Project to deliver new waste infrastructure for the treatment of residual (black bin) waste.

“The recommendation was made due to the degree of uncertainty surrounding the project and question marks over the potential for successful delivery of the project in accordance with the appointment business case and the original final tender submission.”

Environment Minister Mark H Durkan said: “The NWRWMG project had the potential to make a major long-term contribution to the region’s waste management requirements. I believe that the NWRWMG has had to bow to circumstances totally outside its control.

“I am confident, however, that in light of the major challenges which have been presented to both the deliverability and value for money of the project, that the Joint Committee has made the correct decision.”

The Minister continued: “The Joint Committee’s decision has been taken against a background in which, as we all know, waste management in the North requires major reform. For my part, I am committed to seeing that reform delivered, in the best interests of the environment, the economy and the people of Northern Ireland.

“The reform of local government generally provides us with a strong platform on which to deliver a new model for waste services and I will continue to work closely with my officials, councils and other stakeholders until we have rooted out illegality and established a fit for purpose waste management environment for Northern Ireland as a whole.”