New Waste Forum Could Have Real Impact Says General Purposes Chair

Waste management site at Moorwell

Removal of the ‘Moorwell Alp’ is set to start this autumn

The Chair of the General Purposes Committee says he expects the new Waste Forum to have a real impact on Council decisions.

Cllr Steve Sims says he wants islanders to come forward and join the new group.

It will be made up of interested parties representing residents and local businesses, such as builders and hotels.

Members of the forum haven’t been selected yet and Cllr Sims says it won’t just be a talking shop, but will have its discussions minuted and any recommendations will be taken forward to councillors.

Steve was speaking the week after Radio Scilly revealed that the Council’s incinerator at Moorwell had breached emission levels repeatedly for several years without locals being informed.

On Friday, the Council apologised for that and Steve says that was the right thing to do.

He says it’s a huge shift for the authority to “hold up its hands” when historically getting an apology from it was like getting “blood out of a stone.”

One of the reasons Steve says he stood for Council in May was to stop the “closed door” approach.

And he feels these types of issues can’t be buried anymore, especially with Freedom of Information laws in place.

He’s spoken to the Environment Agency and they’ve reassured him that the risk from the emissions was minimal, because the facility itself is so much smaller than incinerator plants on the mainland.

Steve feels the waste consultation in February was not as good as it could have been.

“If you don’t bring people with you,” he says, “they get increasingly antagonist and it becomes harder to do anything.”

He hopes the new Waste Forum will come up with some novel ideas because the people involved will all want to get it right.

The waste is everyone’s problem not just the Council’s, he says, because we all create it.

An informal meeting is being held at the Old Wesleyan Chapel at 6.30pm next Tuesday (20th August) for anyone who’s interested in putting themselves forward.

The Council is hoping around 12 people will sit on the new group.

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