Monday, February 27, 2006


Cement plant WINNER of Process Award Rugby Ltd : Pollution Control - Inbuilt in cement manufacture:


One might indeed wonder what planet these guys inhabit? Have they ever been to Rugby? This must be a sick joke, or proof if ever any was needed that the EU is totally out of step with the UK. RMC have this to say:

"The UK's Green Apple Environment Award has now been followed by a nomination for a European Award for the Environment," says a thrilled Dr David Evans Environment Manager for RMC, "and the National and European recognition justify the confidence we had in the design and the risks we took in developing the plant."

"Faced with the challenge of how best to meet increasingly demanding environmental requirements at a number of ageing cement plants Rugby - part of RMC group - opted for a bold approach. Instead of modifying seven existing installations it decided it would be more COST effective to replace them all with one new cement plant specifically designed to high environmental standards".

WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN SAID: Then we looked round for a target site, the softest option, and the most likely place to find the locals asleep. A green field site would seem to have been easier with only a few sleepy sheep to protest about the development, but we soon realised that sheep were not as stupid or as sleepy as some people believe. We quickly decided that we needed a more gullible populace than a field of sheep. By coincidence we also realised that the Real Estate at Chinnor, Rochester and Southam was worth much more than that at Rugby. And also, most conveniently, Rugby Borough Council and Warwickshire County Council seemed the "best bet", accustomed as they are to pulling the wool over the eyes of the 90,000 Rugby residents. With only 62 County Councillors at Warwick and only 48 Rugby Borough Councillors it was a pushover. They put up no defence, advised as they were by the compliant officers. Cunningly and by stealth local people were told a whole Grimms worth of Fairy Stories about what was planned, and then from the small bean of an idea the mighty stalk of a plant grew and grew. Month by month we fiddled with the plans enlarging and changing for three years, under the not-very-watchful eyes of the officers, who were having great trouble with their Ladybird Book of Planning for Beginners.

Some more wide-awake people like reporters at ENDS (Environmental Specialist) magazine mentioned that it was more than a little odd to build a semi-wet process plant when all over the world the wet and semi-wet plants were being shut down. And not only that but to build it in a town with NO raw materials - they ran out in 1965. And not only that but to put to the west, in a large town, with no roads and no rail connection, so that the plume, being wet would fall continuously on the residents. They said it did not represent BATNEEC and could not comply with IPC, let alone with the higher standards of BAT and IPPC. But the Environment Agency declared themselves to be "happy about it". (And please do not remember who was chair of RMC and the EA at that time).

THE DILEMMA: Now the Councillors and Officers are faced with a "Grimm"
decision: Do they put on a brave face, and try to brazen it out - and tell
the people of Rugby "we did this intentionally as we decided to purposely
and wilfully destroy the whole town". Do they say "we sold you out for
£500,000 that is still in WCC bank, but with all the interest of ten years
in RMC's bank"?

Or do they bite the bullet and admit : " We were totally fooled, mislead, misinformed, and not vigilant. We could not be bothered to read the papers. The words were too long. The files were too fat. We did not understand the terminology, so we let the officers advise us. We were just plain dumb. We did not know what we were doing, and we were ill-advised. We never knew the truth."

Or do they do as we have asked them to do: start an investigation into exactly who said what, and who did what. How did supposedly experienced officers manage to make so many blindingly obvious mistakes? Who could be that stupid for that long? No one! How did RMC manage to fool the officers at WCC and RBC and also to fool 110 councillors? The public are not to blame as the information was never given out to them. And they were not even asked. It was all discretely hidden, at the cement plant, and at the offices of WCC. The true plans were never revealed to Rugby people.

An old 230,000 tonne cement plant has now become a 2 million tonne a year production co-incinerator with:

* no valid Planning Permission, (no public consultation, officers amending
plans and acting under delegated powers)
* no valid IPC permit (No application, no fee was paid, no advertisement, and no consultation) and so is unlawful.
* no valid IPPC permit as proper procedure not followed. The EA and RBC mislead all the consultations, pretending it was only about tyre burning.

The PCT also carried out the same flawed procedure. It cannot have now got an IPPC Permit without ever having had an IPC Permit. It never went through the process of the IPC permitting.


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