Covanta Energy has submitted a legal challenge to Merseyside Recycling & Waste Authority's decision to award a £1.2bn waste contract to a rival.
The case would be heard in the High Court.
Headed by SITA, the authority's preferred scheme is one that would see waste from the Liverpool city region transported to Teesside for processing.
Covanta had proposed an alternative plan in conjunction with Peel Energy which would have led to the construction of an energy from waste plant as part of the Ince Park development at Ellesmere Port, bringing investment and employment opportunities.
Merseyside Recyling & Waste Authority has already been urged to review its decision by Liverpool mayor Cllr Joe Anderson, Peel Group chairman John Whittaker and Andrew Miller, MP for Ellesmere Port and Neston.
They say a rival proposal from US-based Covanta – which included a partnership with a division of the Peel Group – offered major economic development benefits for the North West.
The Ince Park project, of which the Energy from Waste plant is central, remains a key element in Atlantic Gateway, which spans the three Local Enterprise Partnership areas of Liverpool City Region, Cheshire & Warrington and Greater Manchester.
The projects within Atlantic Gateway are designed to allow the North West region to remain competitive and build on its existing strengths through the support of its partners in the public and private sector.
Covanta's legal challenge has been presented to the Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority.