25 June 2012
Aggregate Industries should save more than £100,000 to achieve their final site restoration of wetlands and water features at their Newbold Quarry in Barton under Needwood thanks to WYG facilitating a waste recovery permit.
After negotiations, between environment experts from multi-disciplinary consultant WYG and the Environment Agency (EA), over the strict guidelines surrounding the management and use of waste materials the waste recovery permit was approved. The permit allows the site to be restored through the importation and recovery of 1.7 million cubic metres of inert waste and pulverised ash as part of long term restoration plans. The result could lead to significant benefits to the industry as a whole.
Whilst the local EA officers supported the application, the first response from the EA’s national recovery team was they perceived it the work to be disposal. This would have meant Aggregate Industries would require a more stringent disposal permit to fill and restore the quarry which would have required the minerals extraction company to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Michael Jones, Principal Consultant, WYG said: “WYG and Aggregate Industries disagreed with this view and we successfully persuaded the national recovery team that this was in fact a recovery operation and not a disposal.
“This decision will be valuable for the mineral industry and opens up the opportunity for other companies to seek a recovery permit, potentially saving the industry millions. It is the right result in terms of balancing adequate protection for the environment with giving Aggregate Industries a sustainable quarrying operation and minimising their costs.
“Throughout the negotiations we clearly showed the EA that the materials to be used, which facilitate plans to provide a community park made up of lakes, woodland and agricultural land, were a suitable replacement for non-waste material that would otherwise be used to achieve the restoration and meet the Waste Framework Directive and European case law’s legal requirements.”
“Under a disposal permit, Aggregate Industries would have been required to undertake expenditure on large quantities of engineering, other additional works and environmental monitoring that would have run into the £100,000’s, over the life of the site.”
Tim Claxton, Senior Estates Surveyor, Aggregate Industries said: “We are delighted with the outcome and can’t thank WYG enough, this is not just a result for Aggregate Industries but also a result for the industry as whole, arguing the principles of recovery versus disposal and fundamentally for quarries.”
The 160 hectare site, off Lichfield Road, currently has planning permission for sand and gravel extraction until December 2015, with restoration to be completed by December 2017. The long term restoration plans for the site are to provide outdoor recreation for the local community with the intention that the area will develop a diverse ecology, become home to a wide range of wildlife and will be an ideal venue for a variety of informal and formal recreational activities.
Photo caption: An aerial view of the Newbold Sand & Gravel Quarry