GreenYes Archives

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

RE: [greenyes] Watching the U.K.

Eric brings up several key issues of what is going on in the UK and the EU
and, for two of them -- the mandated diversion of biodegradables, and the
use of environmental fees on landfills -- there is some similar work going
on in the US.

Wisconsin currently has a rule under consideration which would require that,
by January 1, 2007, any new or expanded landfill will need to develop a
biodegradables stability plan. This could include either the diversion of
the biodegradables from the landfill similar to what the EU is requiring,
or, alternatively, the acceleration of the decomposition of the
biodegradables so that the engineering controls on the landfill would no
longer be needed. A workgroup is developing standards for these plans and
the workgroup includes the head staff person of GRRN, several solid waste
consultants, a retired solid waste professor, a solid waste management firm,
and myself. The minutes of these meetings will soon be posted on the

For the environmental fees on landfills -- which several European countries
have, based in part on an examinination of the externalities of landfills
through a process known as environmental valuation -- Wisconsin also has a
landfill surcharge based in part on the externalities of solid waste
disposal. While much more modest than what the UK has, it provides some $10
million a year in funding for alternatives to landfills, and there is a
proposal to substantially increase this fee.

Like Eric, I believe we can learn much from what is going on in Europe to
bring improvements to our solid waste programs here in the US.

John Reindl, Recycling Manager
Dane County, WI

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Eric Lombardi [mailto:eric@no.address]
> Sent: Wednesday, October 13, 2004 5:44 PM
> To: greenyes@no.address
> Subject: [greenyes] Watching the U.K.
> Hi all,
> If you didn't catch this in the recent Waste News (10/11/04, p.19) an
> official from the U.K. presented the following information:
> (1) that by
> 2020, according to EU law, they will need to be diverting 80% of their
> biodegradable waste from landfills; and (2) the current U.K. landfill
> tax is $24 per ton, and will rise to $50 per ton by 2010.
> Now that's what I call a well-funded rates and dates target.
> In the USA
> we don't have anything even close to these numbers, and why not? So,
> with numbers like these, the decline of the European landfill industry
> is well underway. which begs the question, where are they going? The
> choices are really down to two: Maximum diversion through the 3R's
> (inc. composting under recycling), or, incineration. My read on the
> situation is that they are now talking about a 70/30 future . 70%
> recovery and 30% burn. That burn part is a real problem, and it's the
> roots of new incineration proposals and "black box"
> technology solutions
> in the USA and around the world. So, the good news is that global
> momentum is building against landfills, and the bad news is that this
> will feed the growth of the burn industry . unless .
> Eric
> Eric Lombardi
> Executive Director
> Eco-Cycle, Inc
> Boulder, CO
> 303-444-6634

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