Frustration ensues as Limerick incinerator ban over-ridden by national and regional policy    

Rebecca Laffan

Reporter:

Rebecca Laffan

Email:

rebecca.laffan@limerickleader.ie

Frustration ensues as Limerick incinerator ban over-ridden by national and regional policy    

Local democracy being eroded - Cllr James Collins

PROGRESS on the ban on incineration proposed by Limerick City and County Councill has been hindered by regional and national policy, a situation which has been described as “an erosion of public democracy,” by a council member. 

At the recent Meeting of the Economic Development, Enterprise and Planning SPC, an update was given to the committee on the progress of the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy (RSES), a 12-year plan which was unveiled earlier this year.

During the discussion, it was remarked how the councils submission to amend the strategy to include an incineration ban in the county was rejected by the Mid West Regional Authority. 

“All along we’ve been told that we can’t propose a ban on incineration in our local planning documents as it has to be consistent with regional and national planning documents,” said Cllr James Collins to the Limerick Leader last week. 

“When we now try and modify the County Development Plan, it won’t be consistent with RSES which they didn’t allow us to make a submission to,” he added, “they didn’t agree with it.”

Amendments can only be made to the current County Development Plan if it is brought forward by chief executive Pat Daly and voted on by councillors. 

“Thousands of Limerick people took to the streets to protest against incineration, the vast majority of councillors are against it - as are the public who are asking us as councillors and their public representatives what are we doing about this, they’re asking why this is allowed. 

“When we try and change local policy we are told we can’t as we need to comply with national policy. But then when we’re asked for our submissions on national and regional policy it’s rejected. It’s being imposed own upon us and we’re not being allowed to change it. It’s an erosion of public democracy.  

“The council, when we challenge them on why they granted planning permission for the incinerator in Mungret they said they had no choice and that their application complies with the policies as written at the time. So we said we would change those policies but now we’re being prevented from doing that. 

“Limerick people won’t tolerate an incinerator.”