Many of us here in East Renfrewshire have been alarmed to hear of Lifetime Recycling Village’s (LRV) plans for our community. LRV have proposed the Loganswell waste incinerator – a huge waste disposal and electricity generation plant on a greenfield site, to be built just south of Newton Mearns. The company behind the proposal make no secret of the scale of this project which will deal with 1.5 million tonnes of commercial waste every year. The application is not likely to be dealt with locally however, as the plant will generate more than 50 megawatts of electricity, the developers will submit an application for approval to the Scottish Government at some point this year.
Along with my colleague MSP Ken Macintosh and local campaign groups including Dump the Incinerator and Mums against the Incinerator, we led a march in Newton Mearns - Walk Against the Incinerator, opposing LRV’s plans, in which thousands of local residents and families turned out to show their opposition.
Following LRV’s plans for Newton Mearns, they proposed an overspill plant in Barrhead. Upon hearing LRV's plans for Barrhead, I wrote directly to Managing Director Neil Gallacher, inviting him to attend a public meeting. I didn't receive a response to his invitation to meet with the people of Barrhead but within several months the plans had been scrapped. I’m delighted that the developers have backed down on their plans. Local people don't want a waste plant right on their doorstep and roads would have suffered with hundreds of rubbish lorries passing through the town every day. Barrhead residents' concerns and the pressure from other East Renfrewshire campaign groups obviously made this company think again.
I continue to oppose the plans that LRV have put forward for Newton Mearns - the thought of a major industrial development being built on unspoilt countryside only a mile or two from quiet residential neighbourhoods, with the associated traffic and pollution, is unacceptable. I can assure you of my ongoing opposition.
The campaign in Newton Mearns, led by Dump the Incinerator and local community groups, is set to increase the pressure on LRV in the coming weeks and months.
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