Campaigners against a planned new 'waste to energy' incinerator in North Ayrshire have demanded answers to 12 key questions on the proposals.

Developers Doveryard are now constructing the waste incineration facility at Oldhall West Industrial Estate in Irvine.

Plans for the incinerator were previously approved by North Ayrshire Council, but the site will still need Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) approval before it can start operating.

The Irvine Against Incinerators protest group has been campaigning against the waste plant since permission was first sought - complaining the proposals were "slipped through" during the Covid pandemic.

Arthur West from Irvine Against Incinerators said: “Back in November we received an unsigned letter from Doveryard, responding to concerns we had raised a few weeks previously about the environmental and health implications of having a plant  producing toxic pollutants on our doorstep.”

Mr West said that the group had taken a few months to consider in detail the letter they got from Doveryard.

Now they have responded by sending them a 12-point letter of their own which goes into detail about the questions and concerns which have been raised by local communities about the proposed incinerator plant.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Work has started on the new incineratorWork has started on the new incinerator (Image: Doveryard)

Mr West said the group’s letter mainly raised concerns about the health and safety arrangements at the plant, and added that they are looking for a clear and considered response to the issues they have raised.

He added: “Respected environmental campaign Friends of the Earth have clearly said greenhouse gas emissions from incinerators contribute to respiratory disease.

“There is now a ban on any new incinerator projects. However we could be saddled with one in North Ayrshire which got planning permission after limited consultation, and which then slipped under the radar during the pandemic.

"That is why our group is not going away and will continue to oppose this ill-advised project."

Last week, Green MSP Ross Greer launched an online portal where members of the public who don't want the plant to go ahead can lodge an objection with SEPA.

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The MSP and his colleagues at Holyrood secured a ban on the building of new incinerators across Scotland when they entered a partnership agreement with the SNP two years ago.

But the new facility at Oldhall was given planning permission by North Ayrshire Council in 2019, long before that agreement was reached.

Mr West added:  “We were surprised that a company which tries to project itself as a well organised and transparent operator should respond to a community group with an unsigned letter.

"We also could not find a direct email address for the company, so we have posted our letter to them by recorded delivery.”

Doveryard say 200 workers will be employed at the Irvine incinerator plant – with up to 30 permanent jobs to be created at the site.

A spokeswoman for Doveryard Ltd said: "Unfortunately, we don’t have a copy of the letter yet so until we have received it and considered the concerns, it would be difficult to respond.

"However, it is incorrect to claim that we do not have a contact email. It is

"This was in our letter to Irvine Without Incinerators and has been publicly available on our website and in our publicity since the start of the construction in 2022.

“We always welcome enquiries from the local community and encourage anyone with concerns to get in touch.”

Local people can go to to lodge their objection directly to SEPA.