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Waste Management Ltd has applied to refer its resource consent application for an expansion of its waste facility on Marshs Rd in Prebbleton directly to the Environment Court.
Environment Canterbury will decide by July 9 whether to grant the request.
An ECan spokesman said if it is granted, the application and submitters would be heard by the Environment Court, rather than a panel of commissioners at a hearing.
Said Prebbleton resident Judy Sachdeva: “It seems to show that they know the majority of the community are against them and there are very good reasons for us to be concerned about the proposal going ahead.
“If, as they say, the Environment Court will have superior commissioners we would welcome experienced and knowledgeable experts looking at the proposal and we have confidence they will make the right decision for the health and well being of the community.”
One of the reasons Waste Management Ltd gave in its application to have the matter referred directly to the Environment Court was the likelihood of appeals.
“The [resource consent]application is contentious. It has already generated considerable community and media attention including public meetings. In this context, a community trust called the Prebbleton Community Clean Air Trust has been created and a givealittle page created to raise funds to oppose the application.
“The significant public interest raises the real likelihood of appeals and for that reason alone the application should be directly referred to the Environment Court to be determined in the first instance,” the application read.