GreenYes Archives
[GreenYes Archives] - [Thread Index] - [Date Index]
[Date Prev] - [Date Next] - [Thread Prev] - [Thread Next]

[GreenYes] INFO: UK members of parliament attack government's incinerator plans

MPs rubbish government's waste strategy 

The House of Commons Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs (ETRA)
Committee has condemned the government's strategy for improving waste
management as "Depressing", "woefully inadequate" and "an awkward and
underfunded compromise".

Responding to last May's official waste strategy for England and Wales (see
related story), on 20 March, the Committee criticised the governmental
policy on incineration and called for the kerbside collection of
recyclables as "a necessity". Among the key findings of the ETRA Committee

     that the strategy leaves "the door open to a big expansion of large-scale
     incineration of household waste". "We believe that incineration will
never play a
     major role in truly sustainable waste management," MPs commented; 
     that there should be a tax on incineration, the landfill tax should be
increased to 25
     a tonne, and the "charade" of the landfill tax credit scheme should be
     Revenue from landfill and incineration taxes should fund waste
minimisation, reuse
     and recycling; 
     The Government "lacks depth and ambition" for improving resource use.
It must
     set a target to reduce the volume of waste, and break the link with
     the 30% and 33% recycling targets for 2010 and 2015 are "depressingly
     unambitious". Government must set higher recycling targets of 50% by
2010 and
     60% by 2015 to show there is not a ceiling on recycling and composting

In response, the DETR took the unusual step of issuing a rebuttal
statement, insisting that the ETRA Committee's criticism that the Waste
Strategy is too short term is "unfounded" and that it "sets out a clear
vision and challenging targets for managing waste and resources". The DETR
said that it was "disappointed that the Committee has failed to recognise
these challenging, long term targets and the progress already made".

On criticism of the landfill tax, DETR said that it will continue to rise
and by 2004 will be double the initial level. Also, it drew attention to
the Chancellor's announcement in his Budget Statement (see related
story)that the Landfill Tax Credit Scheme will be reformed to direct more
resources towards sustainable waste management.

In addition, DETR said that it had already set statutory recycling targets
for local authorities until 2005/6 and that as technology improves and the
composition of the waste stream changes, it "will increase the level of
targets where appropriate and underpin these with further statutory targets
for councils."

The government did agree, however, with the Committee's view that waste
minimisation is a central challenge and expressed disappointment that it
"proposed further targets but no practical measures to deliver them." 

[GreenYes Archives] - [Date Index] - [Thread Index]
[Date Prev] - [Date Next] - [Thread Prev] - [Thread Next]