Contentious dump site size increase officially nixed
IPSWICH City Council has officially refused an application to increase the height of a landfill site at New Chum.
The council's decision was based on the fact it would not achieve "appropriate rehabilitation outcomes" for the former mine, among other concerns. However, Cleanaway has the option to appeal to the Planning and Environment Court.
A report was presented to the council's growth and infrastructure committee about Cleanaway Solid Waste Pty Ltd's request to increase the height of its existing landfill by 14m at the site on Rhondda Rd and Chum St.
Ipswich Residents Against Toxic Environments president Jim Dodrill said it's been an uphill battle against changes of any description to the site for almost a decade.
"It's something we've been at war with Cleanaway with for a number of years," he said, "They wanted to massively expand that facility in one form or another for as long as we've known about it."
Cleanaway first began proposing changes to the New Chum site in September, 2011.
"We've actually been able to constrain them since then ... they wanted to put putrescible waste in there and they wanted it to go over 100m high at one stage," Mr Dodrill said. said.
"Every time we were able to get the community motivated to oppose it, they would change the plan in one way or another.
"In this instance it looks like we've finally put a nail in the coffin, as far as that facility goes."
The council pre-emptively announced it was recommended for it to refuse the application last week, with more than 320 public submissions standing against the proposal, citing the impact on quality of life, environmental and health impacts, proximity to residential areas and traffic concerns.
Historically used for open cut mining activities, the development site operates as a landfill and associated crushing, screening, milling and grinding activities with a waste transfer station.
The council's acting general manager of planning and regulatory services Brett Davey said the council engaged an external, independent expert to review the development application and they agreed with the recommendation to refuse the application.
Cleanaway also proposed changes to external batter slopes, surface water run-off and capping requirements, the establishment of a new resource recovery area for the sorting, removal and stockpiling of receiving materials that are not intended to be taken to landfill and the introduction of an additional landfill cell.
"The proposed increase in height results in the peak of the landfill being approximately 25m higher than the western edge of the former mining void," he said.
"The proposed landfill footprint is approximately 64ha with an additional 7,479,000m3 of landfill capacity proposed. No changes to the current waste stream acceptance criteria or increase in the intensity of operations in terms of vehicle movements were proposed as part of this application."
Mr Davey said an assessment was undertaken by council officers and it was determined that the proposal does not advance the purpose of the Planning Act 2016 and conflicts with the South East Queensland Regional Plan 2017-2041, State Planning Policy 2017 and the applicable codes of the Planning Scheme and the Temporary Local Planning Instrument No. 1 of 2018 (Waste Activity Regulation) (TLPI) with "no sufficient grounds to justify the decision" despite the conflict.
If council confirms the refusal decision next week, Cleanaway has the option to appeal to the Planning and Environment Court.