waste disposal – towards zero waste by 2020

Dave Spencer writes on the failed Coventry incinerator project

A number of local Councils, including Coventry, have recently scrapped plans to build new giant £1 billion PFI waste incinerators.  These were being encouraged by the last New Labour government that believed in an “energy from waste” strategy – that is burn waste and turn the heat generated into energy for the National Grid. Obviously the prohibitive cost of PFI schemes has hit home with the local Councils.

To save money by scrapping these schemes is all very well but what is the alternative strategy for waste disposal?  The giant incinerator planned for Coventry, right in the city centre, a few hundred yards from my house, was due to take waste from leafy Warwickshire and snobby Solihull and from anywhere else that couldn’t be bothered to organise their own.  You can imagine the gleam in the eyes of the PFI private firms as more and more bin lorries came trundling down the M6 and the A45.  But Friends of the Earth backed by local residents’ groups campaigned against the plans and we won.  We are now left with the old incinerator about which our local councillor told us, “I’ve been assured by Council officers that the smoke coming out of the old incinerator chimney is cleaner than the air it’s going into.”  Ha, ha, ha. Continue reading “waste disposal – towards zero waste by 2020”