A last-ditch legal challenge to stop the building of a controversial £60 million waste incinerator in Shrewsbury has been scrapped.
Shrewsbury Friends of the Earth has dropped its bid to force a judicial review of Shropshire Council’s contract with waste management giant Veolia.
The environmental group said it had concerns about the costs it would face if it lost the case.
It means Veolia will now be able to go ahead with the start of work on the incinerator in Battlefield, with construction scheduled to start in the next few weeks.
Dave Green, a spokesman for Shrewsbury Friends of the Earth, said the group had decided to drop the appeal after being warned by Shropshire Council’s lawyers that it would be pursued for costs.
The organisation had lodged papers with the Administrative Court in Birmingham and was waiting for a decision on a protective costs order, setting a maximum limit for what they could be charged.
The FoE had wanted the building of the incinerator to be postponed to allow the financial case for the Energy from Waste facility to be examined by an independent judge.
But before the costs order decision was made, the organisation agreed to drop its overall case after assessing its chances of success.
Mr Green said: “Obviously we are very disappointed but sometimes you just have to be realistic.
“We still think it is crazy for Shropshire Council to proceed with this at a time where they are having to find further cuts to make.”
He said the decision was not taken lightly.
“It was an assessment of the risks we were taking against the likelihood of success.
“The risks seemed to be building up, but the chance of success seemed to have dropped.”
Shrewsbury Friends of the Earth was one of the groups that opposed the building of the incinerator at last year’s public inquiry.
The incinerator is scheduled to be open by 2015 and will deal with 90,000 tonnes of waste a year.