Last week, planning inspector David Buylla ruled that the Combined Heat and Power’s (Highlands) development on land at Cromarty Firth Industrial Estate, Invergordon, could not go ahead because he did "not regard the environmental information submitted as adequate".
The inspector ruled that "despite numerous requests" CHP Highlands had "failed to provide adequate environmental information or to address other issues considered to be critical to the determination of this appeal".
CHP Highlands had proposed building a plant fired on 100,000 tonnes per year of locally sourced residual domestic, commercial and industrial waste. The plant had planned capacities of 5.6MWe and 6.5Mth.
Several years ago the Highland Council refused planning permission for the development, but after a public inquiry an official acting for the Scottish government approved the scheme on appeal in November 2012.
However, a local landowner and the council then launched a legal challenge, which ended successfully in August 2014, meaning the public inquiry would have to reopen and a planning inspector make a final decision.
In his ruling, issued last week, the inspector felt that "due to its age" the plant’s environmental information needed updating before the process could go any further. However, CHP (Highlands) "caused undue delay" by "failing"to supply the information "despite being given an additional three months" to do so.
According to the waste sector, England must almost double its EfW capacity by 2035, in order to stop the landfilling of municipal waste.