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Saturday, 3 November, 2001, 10:25 GMT
Incinerator protesters march again
Hull Town Hall
Protestors claim councillors have not consulted them
A campaign is underway to prevent the construction of a waste incinerator in the centre of Hull.

Hull City Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council have signed a 25-year contract allowing the Waste Recycling Group (WRG) to burn 165,000 tonnes of rubbish a year in the new incinerator.

Hundreds of protestors who are concerned about the alledged health risks associated with incinerators are marching to the city council buildings to object to the plan.

WRG insists that the incinerator, proposed for Stoneferry in Hull, would be perfectly safe.

'Highest standards'

Clive Carr, managing director for the company's eastern division, told BBC News Online: "We would operate this plant to the very highest standards currently available in the UK and even in Europe.

"I believe those standards are high enough.

"The land it would be built on is derelict contaminated land, which would be cleaned up as a part of the construction process."

Under the 25-year contract Hull City Council and the East Riding of Yorkshire Council would pay WRG to take the waste, which would produce electricity to be sold onto the National Grid.

'Profit making'

Campaigner Eric Wedge, 59, from the group "Hull Against the Incinerator", told BBC News Online: "People need to be aware about the lack of consultation which goes into these profit-making projects.

"Who picks up the tab with all the health problems I do not suppose they care.

"We have thrown down a challenge to the councillors who signed the contract.

"We want them to meet us on the Guild Hall steps on Saturday... we have collected 25,000 signatures, which is the largest petition ever got up in the city of Hull."

Academic studies

The protest group says academic studies support their viewpoint.

Mr Wedge, 59, said: "There are studies by eminent doctors, and one professor at Birmingham University has done a 25-year study into cancer and incineration, which shows that cancers are associated with incineration and the dioxins which are emitted."

"We are about the only country in the western world that is advocating incinerators - other countries are stopping building them - France has closed 80% of its down, and America has not built one for five years."

Mr Carr said: "The UK Department of Health carried out a seven-year study into 14 million people and 72 incinerators, and found that if there was any cancer risk from incinerators it was so small that it wasn't measurable.

"The level of emissions that would be produced are equivalent to the levels of dioxins in urban soils.

The dioxins released on bonfire night are equivalent to that released from all the UK's incinerators in one year."

In August, 400 people attended a protest March against the incinerator proposals, and demonstrators entered Hull City Council wearing gas masks.

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