To: Emma Fitch (Bus Mgr Planning and Minerals and Waste Team, Cambridge County Council)



I/we the undersigned call on Cambridgeshire County Council, South Cambs District Council and The Environment Agency to reject Amey Cespa's plans to build a huge new waste incinerator on the northern fringe of Cambridge.

Reject the planning application from Amey Cespa for a waste incinerator in Cambridge. Waste minimisation, recycling and composting through innovation and behavioural change are the answer not incineration and certainly not in urban areas.

Why is this important?

If everyone who saw this, signed and shared it would achieve its objective within the hour!


Unborn babies, infants and children are most at risk from incinerator emissions research has proven. Waste incinerators are associated with direct causal links to all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality and mortality from lung cancer, higher rates of adult and childhood cancer, birth defects, increased respiratory hospital admissions, a range of emotional and behavioural problems in children, learning difficulties, and delinquency, cell level genetic changes which pose a risk to future generations , and in problems in adults including violence, dementia, depression and Parkinson’s disease, after adjustment for other factors.

These findings come from a wide variety of peer reviewed research, meta-analysis and reports conducted by The World Health Organisation (WHO), British Heart Foundation, British Lung Foundation, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health, The British Society for Ecological Medicine, DEFRA, Asthma UK, Client Earth.

All conclude that incinerators should NOT be approved.

This directly affects your health and that of your family and friends. Don’t say you weren’t warned! YOUR VOICE MATTERS and IT DOES COUNT.

If approved against all advice from world leading environment, climate change and health advisory bodies, Cambridge air pollution WILL increase, forever, with significant and predictable life threatening and life changing health consequences for many, particularly affecting the most vulnerable youngest members of society.

Amey Cespa proposes a £200M waste incinerator in Cambridge that will burn 250,000 tonnes commercial and household waste /yr, from 5 counties incl. Isle of Wight (selling surplus to China), fed at this rate minimum to justify investment. AC already provides facilities for waste recycling, composting, landfill and mechanical biological treatment.

Yes, it proposes energy for 45,000 homes and 300 jobs during construction and operations but does that justify proven and predictable health effects above? Read them again – all-cause mortality, cancer, mental health, adverse effects in unborn babies, infants and children who by nature are in a biological window of vulnerability.

AC submitted their application 20th Dec for a 21 day public consultation, just before the busiest holiday period of the year. They have followed min. statutory requirements to notify the public. For such a major infrastructure application that presents enormous city wide public health and environmental impact, providing 2 short notice site public information meetings (advertised briefly in neighbouring villages) and 2 recent short notice neighbouring parish council meetings, it does appear like AC would rather prefer the application flew very much under the public radar.

The UK and Cambridge has a problem with waste management but if incineration is the answer, somebody asked the wrong question.
Waste incineration in Cambridge will produce an unprecedented health risk for people living in and around the city, air pollution WILL increase and forever with significant and predictable health consequences.

AC cannot guarantee that waste incineration is safe for public health. Toxin emissions and particulate pollution have to go somewhere. EC reports advise reducing NOT increasing air pollution to reduce and prevent land, coast and sea ecosystem damage due to acidification, thus also protecting water, food chains and organic farmers.

There is already local evidence of significant health impacts from the AC Cambridge waste management site. 2016- AC was fined by Cambridge magistrates £50,000 for causing sickness and adverse effects on human health, and prior to these incidents, received 3 enforcement notices 2015 by the Environment Agency. ‘AC fined £50,000’ by F Snoad, Cambridge Evening News, Sep 2016.

The environment agency continues to receive regular calls reporting problems with air quality relating to this site. Local newspapers have reported ongoing problems with local residents and workers complaining of feeling sick, gagging, wheezing, sore eyes and throats, constant unpleasant smells causing them to have to keep windows shut. ‘The waste park is poisoning us: Cambridgeshire villagers concern at Amey recycling centre’ by Samar Maguire, Cambridge Evening News, Sep 2017.

It is enshrined in EC and UK legislation that reducing emissions produces true health benefits, prevents unnecessary burden on healthcare, and protects against the impacts of acid air and water on local and wide ranging ecosystems including land, coast and sea. Costs of incineration, together with research investigating nonstandard emissions from incinerators, has demonstrated that the hazards of incineration are greater than previously realised including that relating to fine and ultrafine particulates. Operating waste incinerators in urban areas results in dangerous health and environmental consequences from both construction and operation. The accumulated evidence on the health risks of incinerators is simply too strong to ignore and their use in Cambridge cannot be justified now that better, cheaper and far less hazardous methods of waste disposal have become available.

The planned chimney stack height is out of keeping with surrounding local village architecture and the Fenland landscape: contravening NPPF guidelines.

The proposed site is greenfield which will potentially be adjacent to major new residential areas.

Waste minimisation, recycling and composting through innovation and behavioural change are the answer not incineration and certainly not in urban areas.

Residents of Cambridge have human right to clean air and their health protected.


Maps © Stamen; Data © OSM and contributors, ODbL

Reasons for signing

  • This plan will impact a number of residential areas already existing and others planned such as at Waterbeach, it will also generate huge numbers of lorries needed to transport the waste resulting in further traffic problems and pollution.
  • I wasn't informed about these plans at all, and I'm concerned about public health.
  • Must ensure air quality at all costs.


2018-01-30 19:19:57 +0000

1,000 signatures reached

2018-01-26 21:00:45 +0000

Apologies to anyone trying to see the evidence link, the URL hasn't been working but here you go:

2018-01-20 14:38:16 +0000

500 signatures reached

2018-01-11 00:03:26 +0000

100 signatures reached

2018-01-10 19:01:05 +0000

50 signatures reached

2018-01-10 16:55:24 +0000

25 signatures reached

2018-01-10 14:01:44 +0000

10 signatures reached

2018-01-10 13:14:01 +0000

Want to know the evidence behind the petition: file:///D:/Personal/Personal/Barracks/Incinerator%20Amey%20Cespa/Evidence/The%20evidence%20doc%20on%20petition/The%20Evidence%20Reasons%20Why%20Incineration%20of%20Waste%20at%20Amey%20Cespa%20Waterbeach%20Will%20Threaten%20Health.pdf

2018-01-10 13:13:08 +0000

Additional info:
Expected 500 movements of HGVs per day which will add to congestion on busy A10 and through neighbouring villages and rat runs, creating further NOx, particulates and dust.