Leigh goes to court on IPC authorisations

The first legal challenge by a company regulated under integrated pollution control (IPC) has been launched by waste management business Leigh Environmental. Two key issues on which it wants the courts to rule are how much discretion HM Inspectorate of Pollution (HMIP) has in imposing upgrading deadlines, and whether companies should be forced to invest in improvements before they have had a chance to appeal to the Secretary of State.

Leigh's applications to the courts concern IPC authorisations issued by HMIP for four of its plants this spring. These are two clinical waste incinerators at Dudley and Four Ashes in the West Midlands, and a chemical waste incinerator and solvent recovery plant at Killamarash, Sheffield.

In each case Leigh is seeking leave for a judicial review of HMIP's decisions. As an interim step, it wants the courts to suspend the authorisations and

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