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[GreenYes] Re: [html][heur] [GreenYes] our solar soulmates don't getit!!

Hi Pete ~

Thanks for doing this. As a 30+ year member of Sierra Club, it will be interesting to see his response.

However, I am puzzled over the point in your note that says composting saves energy, more than incineration.
I support composting for its replication of the earth's natural process of recycling. But energy savings?


-----Original Message-----
From: GreenYes@no.address [mailto:GreenYes@no.address]On Behalf Of Pete Pasterz
Sent: Friday, February 16, 2007 10:52 AM
To: Eric Lombardi; Greenyes
Cc: dave@no.address
Subject: [GreenYes] RE: [html][heur] [GreenYes] our solar soulmates don't getit!!

Carl Pope, the ED for the Sierra Club, has a blog. He addressed this ASES report on 1/31. Here's my response:

"Carl, now I'm perplexed. Why did SC join with ASES on announcing this study, and pronouncing that it is now the official SC Global Warming strategy.

By including Municipal Solid Waste as "biomass, and advocating gasification and stoker bed combustors, its recommendations appear to contradict existing SC policy on Solid Waste, from 1992 particularly accepting NO Incineration of MSW...not even the organic fraction. This ASES report does not even acknowledge the SC requirement for existing incinerators that 60% of materials are reduced, reused, recycled, and composted. This stance on Incineration was reaffirmed as recently as the 9/06 2006 Energy Resources Policy.

Recycling and Composting are well known now to save much more energy than what can be recovered by incineration. And, this magic "black box" solution removes the incentive to recycle and reduce waste, and makes as much sense as thinking that feeding landfills with organics is an efficient way to produce methane gas for a fuel.

How can the Club reconcile these inconsistencies?? What SC Committees were consulted to review this report before it was released?

Pete Pasterz, Member"

Pete Pasterz
Cabarrus County, NC


From: GreenYes@no.address [mailto:GreenYes@no.address] On Behalf Of Eric Lombardi
Sent: Thursday, February 15, 2007 6:56 PM
To: Greenyes
Cc: dave@no.address
Subject: [html][heur] [GreenYes] our solar soulmates don't get it!!
Importance: Low

(this just in from GAIA)

A recent report by the American Solar Energy Society, and recognized by the Sierra Club as their official roadmap to confronting global warming, presents a biomass strategy that would displace real global warming solutions such as recycling and composting by supporting the incineration of municipal solid waste-including paper. This could undermine efforts to transform the pulp and paper industry, reduce paper consumption, increase paper recycling, and protect forests.

The report can be found at:

Sierra Club's press release can be found at:

I have also pasted the text from the report that is of particular concern at the bottom of this e-mail.

The report presents an expanded definition of "biomass" that includes gasification incineration of municipal solid waste as a source of renewable energy. The data used in the study considers more than half of U.S. municipal solid waste as eligible for biomass, including materials that are currently recycled or composted such as paper, cardboard, green waste, food waste and construction wood waste. Further, the report makes no mention of recycling. When the full life cycle is considered, recycling is a far less greenhouse gas and energy intensive approach than biomass incineration.

State and federal climate policy will be pivotal in determining the fate of recycling and composting in the U.S. Rather than support the expansion of incinerators in U.S. communities, we must work to advance policies that support more just and sustainable waste solutions that are better for the climate than incineration and landfilling.

Promote recycling, not incineration:

* Write a letter to the Sierra Club to let them know that you are concerned about the impact of biomass incineration on paper recycling. The Sierra Club has been an ally on many issues. Please consider including the points below:

o Biomass should not be defined to include incineration (including gasification, pyrolysis, plasma and other incinerator technologies) of valuable materials found in municipal solid waste such as paper, cardboard, green waste, food waste and construction wood waste because:

* Classifying incineration as a source of renewable energy and a solution to global warming undermines real global warming solutions such as recycling and composting

* Recycling and composting of discarded materials contributes far fewer greenhouse gas emissions than incineration

* Recycling and composting materials conserves 3-5 times more energy than incineration generates

* Incinerators are the most expensive and toxic approach to dealing with municipal solid waste

Of particular concern in the report is the following:

"Urban Residues (Municipal Solid Waste [MSW])

Values for biomass in MSW were available for California at the county level [21], and we obtained data for the remaining states (with the exceptions of Alaska and Montana) from a recent survey of state solid waste and recycling officials [25]. We calculated a value for annual per capita MSW generation of 1.38 metric tons per person per year from the data available for the 16 states. We applied this annual per capita factor to the populations of Alaska and Montana to estimate their MSW generation. We applied values for moisture content (30% wet basis) and biogenic fraction of MSW (56%) to the MSW values to arrive at estimates of biogenic dry matter in MSW for each state. This resource includes only the biomass component of MSW and not the entire MSW stream. The biomass component consists of paper and cardboard, green waste, food waste, and construction wood waste, and specifically excludes plastics, tires, and other non-biomass materials. We determined biomass in MSW diverted from landfill by subtraction of disposal from generation."

The report includes the following incineration technologies:

* Stoker and fluid bed combustors with steam generation and steam turbines

* Gasification with applications to boiler steam generation and steam turbines, combined cycle (gas turbine, heat recovery steam generator, and steam turbine), or an ICE

Dave Ciplet

Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA)

Tel: 510.883.9490 ext. 102

Fax: 510.883.9493

dave@no.address <>

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