GreenYes Archives

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

[greenyes] Action: Incineration is not renewable energy: Please sign on!

Dear GreenYes Friends,

Please join us in SIGNING ON to the following document urging U.S. federal,
state, and local agencies to exclude waste incineration, gasification, and
pyrolysis from qualifying as a renewable source of fuel and power.

The incinerator industry in the U.S. is attempting to define waste
incineration as a "renewable" source of energy in the U.S. At least 12 U.S.
states define incinerator technology as a renewable source of energy, and
other states are considering qualifying incineration as renewable. This is a
greenwash attempt by a polluting industry and could make incinerators
eligible for special subsidies and funding, to the detriment of waste
prevention and recycling programs.

As part of the Global Day of Action on Waste, the U.S.-based Institute for
Local Self-Reliance and GAIA are circulating the following SIGN ON DOCUMENT
and will be releasing this document to the media and to local, state, and
federal agencies around the U.S. on September 1, 2004.

**To sign on, please email your response to mwilson@no.address by 30 August
Please include your name, group/organization, city, and country.
Or visit

Thank you!
Monica Wilson

= = = = = = = = =
Sign-On Document
Urging U.S. Federal, State, and Local Agencies to Exclude Waste
Incineration, Gasification, and Pyrolysis* from Qualifying as a Renewable
Source of Fuel and Power


Waste incinerators (including waste pyrolysis and gasification systems) are
net energy losers when the embodied energy of the materials burned is
accounted for;

Recycling materials saves three to five times the amount of energy as
incinerating these same materials would generate;

For every ton of material destroyed by waste incineration, many more tons of
raw materials must be mined, extracted, processed, or distributed to
manufacture new products to take its place;

Waste incineration encourages a one-way flow of materials on a finite
planet, thus making the task of conserving resources and reducing waste more
difficult, not easier;

If the U.S. incinerated all of its municipal solid waste, it would
contribute less than 5% of the country?s energy needs;

Waste incineration represents the most polluting solid waste management

Waste incineration systems (including waste pyrolysis and gasification
systems) produce dioxins, furans, and other persistent pollutants, and the
detrimental health impacts of pollutants released by waste incinerators have
been well documented;

Incineration is expensive and does not eliminate or adequately control the
toxic emissions from today?s chemically complex municipal discards;

Even new incinerators release toxic metals, dioxins, and acid gases;

Far from eliminating the need for a landfill, waste incinerator systems
produce toxic ash and other residues;

One alarming new trend is the increase in projects to use incinerator ash
and disperse it throughout the environment;

Maximizing energy recovery is technologically incompatible with reducing
dioxin emissions;

Waste incinerator systems rely on minimum guaranteed waste flows, thus
directly promoting continued waste generation while hindering waste
prevention, reuse, composting, recycling, and recycling-based community
economic development; and

Waste incineration costs cities and counties more and provides fewer jobs
than comprehensive recycling and composting, and prohibits the development
of local recycling-based businesses.


Exclude "waste," "waste resources," "waste incineration," "pyrolysis," and
"gasification" from qualifying as renewable or sources of renewable energy,
fuel, or power in renewable portfolio standards, renewable energy
solicitations, renewable energy grant/loan programs, green or clean power
programs, biomass energy programs, and other related programs, regulations,
legislation, and policies; and

Exclude "municipal solid waste" from the definition of "biomass" in
renewable energy standards, procurement policies, and other related
programs, regulations, legislation, and policies.


Brenda Platt
Institute for Local Self-Reliance
927 15th Street, NW, 4th Floor
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 898-1610 ext. 230

Monica Wilson
1442A Walnut St., #20
Berkeley, CA 94709
(510) 883-9490 ext. 2#

*NOTE: For this sign-on document, waste incineration refers not just to
mass-burn and refuse-derived-fuel systems, but to any type of thermal
treatment system for discarded materials that wastes resources and emits
pollutants. These include technologies based upon combustion, pyrolysis,
and thermal gasification. Like combustion, pyrolysis and gasification
systems produce dioxins, furans, and other persistent pollutants.
Gasification and pyrolysis of municipal solid waste are classified as
?incineration? by the European Union. This document does not refer to
landfill gas or to biological treatments.

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