by Andrew Green
owners of Parkwood landfill, Viridor Waste Management, want
to open up a fourth tipping area (or ‘cell’) between
the existing landfill and the Ski village at Parkwood Springs.
its inquiry into the smells and environmental and health problems
reported by local residents, a Sheffield City Council report
recommended early completion and landscaping of the cell nearest
the new houses adjacent to the landfill at Kingsmead. But
Viridor is offering instead to build a bank of inert material
to screen the houses from the landfill.
material would be earth from the unused area south of the
landfill, leased from Sheffield Council and given planning
permission for industrial use in 1996. Viridor would then
use the hole they would create as a new cell. To do this,
they would need planning permission for the change of use
and a new waste management licence.
claims to play ‘a leading role in enhancing and maintaining
the quality of the environment.’ As owner of a large
number of landfill sites across the UK, its assets consist
mainly of the volume of landfill space it can offer to customers.
Viridor acknowledges that ‘landfill will continue to
underpin our waste management system for many years’;
sometimes it is the Best Practical Environmental Option, Viridor
told a House of Commons Select Committee in 2000.
the Foot and Mouth mass cull, Viridor disposed of large numbers
of carcasses at landfill sites. Local residents complained
of ‘vomit-inducing’ emissions. In northern Ireland
a local group have long campaigned against Viridor’s
proposed ‘superdump’ which, they allege, will
pollute Larne Lough.
Viridor set up a consortium, Viridor-Tiru, to bid for the
contract to build two incinerators for Brighton and Hove Council.
Part owners of Tiru are Onyx, who intend to build the giant
incinerator in Sheffield. Ash from this and other incinerators
is dumped at Parkwood.
two years to March 2002, Viridor increased its waste management
turnover from £63 million to £125 million, almost
doubling its operating profit which rose from £8m to
£15m. Viridor is owned by Pennon Group plc, based in
Council offered to set up a liaison group where people living
near Parkwood could hear reports on management and plans for
the site, and express concerns. When members of Parkwood Landfill
Action Group (PLAG) arrived at the first meeting, they discovered
that the liaison group was to be wholly run and controlled
by Viridor. No one from Shirecliffe was invited, although
Shirecliffe residents complain of serious environmental problems
caused by the landfill and have long campaigned for its closure.
residents told the Messenger that since Viridor took over
the smell had been intolerable. Every other day, ‘putrid’
smells were seeping into their houses. Brian Wilson said it
was ‘absolutely disgusting’ that the Council had
handed over control of the liaison group to Viridor.
organising a petition to oppose permission for the site extension.
c/o Green City Action, Abbeyfield House, Abbeyfield Road,
Tenants’ and Residents’ Association 0114 242 3366