Friday, October 06, 2006

The quarry today

Had a stroll round the perimeter fence of Hafod today. As I set off round the tip, a West Pennine Recycling wagon was just arriving with a load of what appeared, through my binoculars, to be building rubble, pallets etc. There was a huge cloud of dust as it was tipped out onto the day's rubbish heap. Here it is after the dust had settled a bit.

west pennine rubble

West Pennine Recycling is a Buckley firm which is, according to its website, "an environmentally friendly specialist waste management service that effectively disposes of Commercial and Industrial waste in the Chester and North Wales region" and which uses the slogan "Looking After You!" But not us, obviously. Does landfill constitute effective disposal? Is West Pennine near Buckley? Here's the day's rubbish being flattened out as the West Pennine truck leaves the site.

one day's rubbish

As I reached the top of the site, another truck arrived, this one from Wrexham. Answers and Solutions Wrexham Ltd. boasts that "our customers can be sure that their waste and rubbish is disposed in the most responsible and environmentally friendly manner possible." Yeah? I couldn't see what it was tipping from my vantage point and the truck had left by the time I got back. Presumably that was the last truck of the day (just before 4pm) because as I walked back along the perimeter, the diggers and dumpers were busy covering up the rubbish with soil.

covering up

Hafod Quarry is one huge hole. This picture puts the tip in context, with houses and Ruabon Mountain visible in the background.

one huge hole

Click on any of the pictures to see larger versions.


At Friday, October 06, 2006 11:47:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now the first cell is well under way, what happens if tipping is stopped?
Who will monitor the waste that has been tipped and dispose of the water from the site?
Who will pay?
Why have you all been so quiet over the last few years when YOUR rubbish was going to Rosset? More recently Pen-Y-Bont? No protests there that I know of.
Clearly it is a case of NOT ON MY DOORSTEP.

At Friday, October 06, 2006 11:57:00 PM, Blogger dafad ddu said...

Some of us have been campaigning to recycle and reduce waste in Wrexham for a decade or more. Some of us were involved in the campaign to stop the incinerator, which would have "landfilled in the sky". Hafod has been opposed by people in Ruabon and Johnstown for more than a decade and some of those people have been fighting the other tips in the vicinity. Just because these campaigns have not had the publicity that Hafod has (recently) doesn't mean they weren't being fought.
As to the very real question of "who pays" - well, at the moment it looks like the local community will be paying a very high price in terms of health. I don't think there's another landfill site in this area so close to hundreds of houses (and with a few hundred metres of a primary school). Please correct me if I'm wrong.
Perhaps that's why the people here have fought so long and hard to defeat this.
Who should pay? Murkeyside's councils for taking the easy option on what is a difficult subject. Wrexham should not be punished for wanting a better environment.

At Saturday, October 07, 2006 10:44:00 AM, Anonymous John W said...

To add to what Hafod said, there are many people involved in the Hafod campaign, and who have been involved in other environmental campaigns including the one against the incinerator, who do not live in the immediate vicinity.

But anyone who does live right by the landfill has good reason to protest. The guidelines that state minimum distances between landfill and local housing are there for good reason. Hafod doesn't meet those guidelines, our guidelines, here in Wales. Some of the houses are just metres from the perimeter fence and people have every right to complain when policies which are there to protect them can be conveniently ignored.

Lastly, regarding water run-off, we know from experience that there are likely to be pollution incidents. The site is within the Dee protection zone, another reason it shouldn't be there. If landfills were monitored properly while in operation, there wouldn't be such incidents, and those are only the ones that come to light. Better stop the landfill now and do a bit of clearing up rather than deal with the pollution incidents and adverse health effects for years to come.

At Monday, October 09, 2006 10:27:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is all very well saying recycle but I know from experience that a lot of waste is called waste for a reason. Working in the industrial sector over the last few years it obvious that more factories and businesses in the area are trying to do more but there is still a lot of waste that needs to be disposed of. What do we do with that stuff?

At Tuesday, October 10, 2006 1:42:00 PM, Blogger Bren said...

Well, it is true that zero waste is a long way off, and that some waste (albeit a lot less than at present) has to be dealt with. There are processes which make landfill waste virtually inert - so that whatever still goes to landfill doesn't end up poisoning the land and air and harming the health of the local populations. However, the main thing about this site, as I keep saying, is that it is too close to local housing (some houses are just yards from the perimeter fence), it is within the River Dee Protection Zone and toxins from the site are likely to end up in the River Dee at some point, part of the site is an SSSI and a Special Area of Conservation, and under current regulations and guidelines, landfill simply would not be allowed there.


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