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Environment Secretary John Gummer yesterday overruled his own independent inspector and threw out a planning application for a £30 million toxic waste incinerator in Humberside, the Yorkshire Post reports on its front page.

Gummer's inspector Michael Brundell had recommended approval for International Technology Europe's application to site the incinerator on the outskirts of Hull near the villages of Hedon and Paull.

The victory cost Humberside CC, which hired a London based barrister to fight the application, £500,000 in legal fees and man hours to make a case against ITE, which had the backing of the giant parent IT Corporation in America.

Deputy council leader Mitch Upfold said the case showed the essential need for a large authority capable of taking on multi-nationals and questioned the effectiveness of smaller unitary authorities if Humberside was abolished.

Two community based opposition groups Holderness Toxic Waste Offensive Organisation (HTWOO) and Humberside Action to Stop Toxic Emissions (HASTE) helped to collect a 46,000 name petition and 5,000 individual letters of protest were presented to 10 Downing Street.

According to the Yorkshire Post Mr Gummer concluded that the fact that 42 trucks of toxic waste a day would be going straight through Hull city centre and the sheer spectre of a toxic waste incinerator with the capacity of burning 46,000 tonnes of waste and treating 40,000 tonnes of liquid on an estuary of international environmental importance weighed heavily against the proposal.

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