Residents are celebrating after a town hall chiefs slammed developers over pollution levels which could be caused by cruise terminal plans.
Greenwich council leader Danny Thorpe said he was “hugely disappointed” developers Morgan Stanley had not yet responded to his calls for them to address the impact of the Enderby Wharf plans.
It is believed that docked cruise ships in the planned port could cause huge amounts of air pollution.
Cllr Thorpe said: “I’m hugely disappointed that no sensible proposal has yet been received from the site owner. It is vital that the borough secures a well-balanced proposal that includes a sufficient amount of genuinely affordable housing alongside employment opportunities for local people.”
A campaign to bring clean onshore power to Enderby Wharf has gained huge support as a petition with more than 7,000 signatures was delivered to Greenwich council.
The No Toxic Cruise Port (NCTP) group, who started the petition, are calling for clean onshore power, which they say will reduce pollution as docked ships can plug in and switch off their engines.
The Labour leader said: “We are working hard to improve air quality across the borough and recognise that it is a significant concern for all residents. I want to assure residents that we are doing all we can to seek a resolution to this issue. I’m publicly calling on the developer to urgently come back to the table with sensible and meaningful proposals that address the concerns of the community, as well as ensuring any new scheme complies with our planning policies.
“We are aware that the site is up for sale and given this, we think it is an excellent opportunity for the developer to pause and reflect.”
The council cannot revoke the planning consent granted and any formal decision would be with the council’s Planning Board.
NCTP co-founder Laura Eyres said: “It’s great to see the community’s campaigning paying off and Greenwich council now in full throttle pushing for a clean cruise port or none at all. It would be good though to be able to understand a bit more about the discussions Greenwich have had with developers so far.
“We back Cllr Thorpe’s call on developers to slash the environmental impact from the cruise port.
“No one is going to buy this toxic development. Morgan Stanley need to listen to the community, to the Mayor of London, sit down with our Council and do the right thing. They can’t leave the land and local people in limbo any longer.”
The GLA’s deputy mayor for environment and energy, Shirley Rodrigues, said: “The Mayor and I have been clear that we are extremely concerned about the potential impact on air pollution and emissions of the Enderby Wharf development.
“The Mayor is fully supportive of Greenwich council’s strong stance in seeking a solution which includes additional measures to cut emissions and protect public health. Over the last 18 months I have met all the stakeholders – including the council, the developer and the cruise terminal operator – and we will continue to support them in their negotiations.”
Initial plans to develop the cruise ship terminal at Enderby Wharf were approved by Greenwich council in 2011.
An unnamed resident lodged a judicial review challenge in 2016 on grounds relating to air quality, which was dismissed.
Leader of the Conservative opposition, Cllr Matt Hartley said: “Cllr Thorpe is certainly talking the talk nowadays – but we need to know what the council is actually doing, beyond issuing press releases, to bring the developers back to the table. Warm words are not enough.
“Residents will also have noticed his careful choice of words about making the terminal ‘more green’. Has he changed his mind on the need for on-shore power, or not?”
A spokesman for Morgan Stanley said: “We’re working on fresh proposals for the Enderby Wharf site and look forward to engaging with the council to discuss these in the near future.”
Please support your local paper by making a donation
Please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing recently: “A free country needs a free press, and the newspapers of our country are under significant financial pressure”.
So if you have enjoyed reading this story, and if you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can buy our newspaper or make a donation, which will allow us to continue to bring stories like this one to you both in print and online.