The European Commission, in a statement on 7 May 2014, ruled in favour of the four Dublin local authorities and has now given the green light for the Poolbeg Incinerator, a waste to energy PPP project.
The project will be developed in a design, build, finance, operation and maintenance basis for a period extended from 25 to 45 years.
The plant faced obstacles when a number of complaints were lodged with the EU Commission by Sandymount residents Joe McCarthy and Valerie Jennings in relation to contracts for the facility. The complaint alleged that the public-private partnership contract breached EU regulations on state aid and procurement.
The European Commission reported later in a statement:
The European Commission has found that a series of measures by the Dublin local authorities to participate in the waste to energy project in Poolbeg, Dublin, are in line with the EU state aid rules.
Dublin City Council is involved in a public private partnership with the company Covanta which is the plant developer. The project was awarded to Covanta after the the contract with RPS and COWI was finished
Covanta still has to raise the necessary funding for the project. Dublin City Council has previously granted Covanta multiple extensions to secure funding. The latest extension was agreed on in April 2014, giving Covanta until 31 August to secure funding.
The council has already invested a total of €100 million in the project and more than €50 million of which went to buy land for the facility. The incinerator is expected to take 3 years to build and will cost an estimated €350 million. The project has gone on for over a decade. The proposed 600,000 tonnes incinerator is located Pigeon House Road, Poolbeg.