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Incinerator = 6 Fags a day

Friday, November 2nd, 2012 by Cllr Julian Powell

The proposed incinerator next to Blooms Garden Centre is being designed to burn 190,000 tons of rubbish a year, and force Quedgeley residents to breathe in the equivalent of between 3 and 6 cigarettes a day.

The designers reckon that they will capture 27,000 tons of ash, and release 163,000 tons to the air each year.

Some of the air quality monitoring data and predictions are becoming available. The incinerator is being designed to spread the 163,000 tons over as wide an area as possible, to reduce the pollution levels as far as possible. If they could spread it evenly across the whole county it works out at 52 grams per square meter, or about 2 ounces per square yard, across the whole county, each year, every year, for the next 30 years.

The modelling reckons that about 40% of the gasses will go into the high atmosphere and be blown as far as Scandinavia. But that leaves about 68,000 tons of ash to come back down as ash. The chimney is not high enough to fully disperse the smoke plume from the incinerator, and due to wind patterns, most of it will fall over Gloucester and Cheltenham, and that includes Quedgeley. The ash from the incinerator is equivalent to between 3 and 6 cigarettes a day, depending where you live. It is not until Bishops Cleeve that the fall out is below the equivalent of ½ cigarette a day!

Of the 27,000 tons of captured ash, they want to transport 6,000 tons each year to a special tip near Peterborough (if they can’t use the tip near Cheltenham). It is so toxic they can do nothing with it. They want to turn the remaining 21,000 tons of ash into building blocks or road stone aggregate. That’s equivalent to making 10,400 blocks a day, every day, for the next 30 years. To do this they have to release Hydrogen Sulphide from the ash, which is a very, very smelly process; it stinks like rotten eggs; anywhere within 5 miles of the plant will smell it. Last time I attended a briefing from Urbasser they said they want to build this "aggregate handling plant" alongside the incinerator. The effect of this production plant on the local area has not been disclosed.

The modelling assumes that the incinerator operates with specification at all times, at a minimum of 90% of capacity, for the next 30 years. 90% of capacity is equivalent to 171,000 tons of waste, but the whole of the County of Gloucestershire will not be producing that much residual domestic waste during the 25 year contract the Council wants to enter into. To make up the shortfall they will be diverting trade waste from recycling to the incinerator and may even import waste from out of county. They will have to ‘buy in’ a lot more waste in year 1 than in 25 year’s time. At the moment we don’t produce anywhere near enough waste to feed the incinerator at 90% of capacity. Burning less than 171,000 tons forces the incinerator to operate out of specification, not work properly, and produce more pollution.

Infant Deaths Three to Four Times Higher Downwind of Incinerators

Monday, July 4th, 2011 by Cllr Julian Powell

Public Consultation on the Incinerator Proposals

There are two public consultations planned and coming up soon.

An exhibition being held at Javelin Park from 16th to 19th July 2011. The County Council and the two companies bidding to build and operate an incinerator will show their plans. Go along and ask them why they are prepared to kill babies, when there are other, safer, alternatives.

The consultation on the waste core strategy, which says we need an incinerator, has been re-opened from 27th June 2011 to 8th August 2011.

It appears the County Council is trying to control the potential objections by limiting the response period, requiring a standard response form to be used and limiting the areas they will accept comments on to the changes only. It appears their main interest is to justify the £600,000 they have agreed to pay the bidders if the proposals are cancelled (or so I have been told, so that is third hand info, it maybe more it maybe less).

But now is the time to make objections through the official routes if you are unhappy with the proposal to build a giant incinerator on our doorstep. Some people may prefer to take direct action, but it is important to follow the official routes as well. The web site for the consultation is:

http://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/wcs/publication

Infant Deaths and Other Health Effects

UK Health Research shows high incidence of infant deaths coincide with close proximity of populations to incinerators.

Anywhere within 14 miles of Javelin Park is considered close to the proposed incinerator when using this data.

Infant deaths near incinerators are more than double the national average. Wind plays an important part, and death rates downwind are three to four times higher than upwind. We live downwind of the proposed incinerator at Javelin Park.

The County Council and the big firms bidding to build and operate an incinerator say health effects will not be as bad as this. They say the incinerator will be built to the latest standards, and will operate within specification at all times for the next 30 years. But then they would, wouldn’t they.

Infant Deaths per 1,000 live births

DOWNWIND — placename — UPWIND

9.4 – Kirklees (Huddersfield) – 3.5

8.2 – Coventry & Solihull Waste Disposal – 3.2

10.5 – Edmonton Incinerator (London) – 2.5

England and Wales average 2009 – 4.5

It’s not only children who are at risk. Adults will suffer as well.

People who are exposed to emissions from incinerators run the risk of:
• Increased infant deaths
• Lower birth rates
• Increased asthma and other respiratory ailments
• Increased heart disease and spina bifida
• Other complications including shortened attention spans.
• 12-year reduction in adult life expectancy

With thanks for data and information from:
Office for National Statistics (2011). Infant Mortality Rates continue to Fall.
Dr van Steenis (2009). Lecture to Hatfield Against Incineration.
Michael Ryan BSc, C Eng, MICE. (2005) Written Evidence to the Select Committee on Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. UK Health Research

Have You Voted Yet?

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011 by Cllr Julian Powell

Have you voted yet?

I don’t care which way you vote, I’m not a contestant in the City elections. But for more than 20 years Quedgeley has been seen as a ‘safe seat’, and so our City Councillors do not try to do a good enough job for us, too often they just follow the party line.

About 12 years ago I was asked to stand for the City with the words, ‘You don’t have to do much, turn up to the meetings, vote whichever way the party leader says and collect the attendance fee. We could put up a dead donkey with a blue badge and it would get in’. I didn’t stand. It could have been any of the parties.

A couple of years later I was asked by somebody else. Completely unexpected. I was in the mood to take part in the contest, and got ‘baptised’ into the dirty world of City Council Politics.

After three years I realised how petty the vast majority of local politicians are, the ONLY thing that scares them is more people taking part. When lots of people vote they cannot be sure of which way the election will go. It makes them work harder for us.

By working harder, I mean not just the stuff of dog poo, street lights, and litter collection. These are the activities at the level of the Parish Council. They need to be done, but it’s a shame, for the most part the City Councillors don’t think above that level.

They should have worked out a better way of collecting the refuse than just trying to grab an additional £36 for grass cuttings. They should be contesting the County Plan for an incinerator that will blight our area for the next 25 years. It just does not make sense financially, never mind ecologically.

They should have found a way of not paying the £1,497,000 to retired former employees of the City Council (over and above the pensions they normally contribute to, as in their accounts 2008/09) (they paid £1.2M in pension contributions for current employees).

They should be working to get the County to provide an additional secondary school, as well as School 2 on Kingsway (as this will be needed within three years), not to mention a Doctor’s and a Dentist. They should be playing an effective role in planning control, not just rubber stamping what the big developers want, and crushing the ordinary man.

They should be selling off the land bank that the City owns. For the best part of 40 years they have been buying up land for a mythical regeneration of Gloucester. In the process they have blighted the City, and become the problem not the solution.

Quedgeley, including Kingsway, is seen by the City Council as a cash cow, to provide money for the Docks Office, not as a place where they need to do things. They are interested in putting up a camera to fine people for using a road, but not really bothered to do anything more constructive.

Vote on May 5th. I hope if more people vote it will change how ‘they’ work for us, it’s long overdue that we made them sit up and take notice.

Stand for Election Now

Friday, April 1st, 2011 by Cllr Julian Powell

If you want to stand for election to the City and or Parish Councils, now is the time to get your nomination in. Nominations must be submitted to the Elections Officer at the City Council no later than 12 noon on 4th April.

You need just a proposer and seconder for the Parish Council but ten for the City, because it is a much larger organisation taking much more money from our pockets, and so should have much more influence.

Copelands Park is in Quedgeley Severnvale Ward, and the rest of Kingsway is in Quedgeley Fieldcourt Ward.  As I understand it, you can stand in either ward provided you meet the various criteria for nomination.  These are available from the Parish office (tel 721552) and or the City Council (tel 396203).

Because the City Council seems unable to predict or keep up with the changing face of Quedgeley, Fieldcourt Ward has roughly 1½ times the number of electors of Severnvale, but still has the same number of Councillors.

I’ll be standing as an independent candidate again, but would really like lots of people try to get in.  It’s all for the best of Quedgeley if we can get more people interested.

Parish Councillor Julian Powell

Waterwells Synthetic Pitch – Official Opening

Thursday, November 5th, 2009 by Cllr Julian Powell

Waterwells Synthetic Pitch – Official Opening Saturday 21 November at 10:30

Please come to the official opening of the Synthetic all weather pitch at Waterwells Sports Centre on Saturday 21st November 2009 at 10:30 am.

The entry is off the link road between Naas Lane and Waterwells Drive.
There will be youth team football matches / demonstrations taking place.

The synthetic pitch is an artificial grass surface with full flood lighting and is available for local groups to hire at discounted rates. For details contact Quedgeley Parish Council on 721552.

Funding for the synthetic pitch was provided by Quedgeley Urban Village Ltd, the Kingsway developers, and the project has been completed by Quedgeley Parish Council, on time and within the £230,000 budget.

The land for the Waterwells Sports Centre was donated by Crest Nicholson, from the Waterwells Business Park, along with the funds to provide a high quality grass playing surface. The changing rooms at Waterwells were provided by the City Council, Parish Council and Quedgeley Wanderers Football Club with a substantial grant from the Football Foundation.

For the future, all we will need is an indoor or undercover training facility, and an outdoor hard-court informal sports facility and we will take Waterwells from a Sports Centre to be proud of, to just about the best Sports Centre in the area.

Chair of Governors, Kingsway Primary School

Sunday, September 27th, 2009 by Cllr Julian Powell

As of 23 September 2009 Community Governor Jan Mabson is the new Chair of Governors of Kingsway Primary School.

Much to my disappointment I have had to stand down. I am working away part of the week and cannot do the Chairman’s role effectively. I will remain as an ordinary school governor and give whatever help I can. Parent Governor, Tracey Longden-Thurgood is the new Vice Chair.

I am happy to still talk to parents but am no longer the Chairman. The easiest way to contact the school is via the School website.

I knew the temporary Governing Body was going to be a lot of work when I took it on the year before the school was officially created. Since then it has been whirlwind of activity for the school, we now have more than three times the number of pupils originally predicted by the County Council.

The children from Kingsway and Copeland Park come from a huge range of backgrounds. In the past, some have been better served by the education system than others, and the staff are working very hard to try to get everybody to reach their full potential. We hope we may gain a large number of children from families moving to the area to work for Nato in the near future, and this will add another dimension to the school.

So I predict another very interesting, exhausting, but rewarding year for Kingsway Primary School, and offer my best wishes and support to Jan and Tracey, Headteacher Paula Needham and her staff.


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