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[GreenYes] Urgent: Letters needed to encourage Scottish Government not to consider burning as part of Zero Waste

Cc: zwia@no.address,
From: Iain Gulland <iain@no.address>
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2008 08:40:42 +0000
To: gary@no.address
Subject: [GAIA] Re: [ZWIA] Fwd: Scottish Government may consider burning
 part of Zero Waste

thanks for posting this Gary
indeed as you are aware Scotland got a new government last year. The SNP were elected for the first time and one of their manifesto commitments was Zero Waste. They have since consulted with a range of industry types on waste policy going forward and our Cabinet Secretary for the Environment will make a statement on Thursday in Parliament on the 'road to Zero Waste'.

Unfortunately the industry guys are still hoping that Zero Waste means incineration as per the article below. I have suggested to the Government that the eyes of the world are on Scotland this week in terms of seeing if the Zero Waste ambition is just that or just an empty pledge which will be compromised to feed the greed of the incinerator lobby. It would be great for all you Zero Waste guys to send an e-mail of support to our Cabinet Secretary extolling the virtues of the Zero Waste approach and confirming indeed that all of the world is watching Scotland set its course for Zero Waste without falling back on the incineration option. Stating the links with community empowerment and jobs will also be useful. Links to other countries, states, municipalities and towns etc where they are doing the high diversion that we all know is now possible would be very useful. One of the other SNP manifesto commitments on waste was to learn from other countries. 

The Cabinet Secretary's name is Richard Lochhead and his e-mail is Richard.Lochhead.msp@no.address

I know that you are all very busy but any support at this crucial time would be useful

many thanks

Iain Gulland

On 22 Jan 2008, at 01:52, Gary Liss wrote:

Apologies for Cross-postings

Scottish Government set to reveal direction for waste policy


The Scottish government has said it will announce more detail on its intentions for national waste policy this week.

The move follows consultations with local authorities and regulators held over the autumn and winter, and a report from the Sustainable Development Commission on the use of energy-from-waste.
SEPA believes that the recovery of energy from appropriate wastes, given the inherent value of waste which can be lost in landfill, is fully compatible with zero waste.
John Ferguson, SEPA

Since the Scottish Nationalist Party won a slim majority in the Scottish Parliament in May 2007, Scottish ministers have provided little detail on the Party's manifesto aim to move towards a "zero-waste society" (see story).

But a spokesman for the Scottish Government confirmed on Friday (January 18) to "Our future policy direction on waste will be unveiled next week."


A key question for local authorities seeking to meet national landfill diversion targets will be whether the "Zero Waste" intention of the SNP-led government will allow them to use incineration to deal with waste left over after recycling has taken place.

The original "Zero Waste" movement has been seen as against the use of incineration.

However, commissioned by the Scottish government to provide advice on the issue over the winter, the Sustainable Development Commission Scotland has backed the use of energy-from-waste technology - provided that key criteria in the use is met.

In a report published last month, it said: "The overall conclusion of our review is that energy from waste may be, in the right circumstances, compatible with sustainable development and a move towards a Zero Waste Society."

The Commission suggests energy-from-waste systems should be evaluated on their ability to reduce carbon emissions to meet government commitments to cut emissions by 80% by 2050.

It also states that plants should recover energy to a minimum efficiency level of 60% and stresses that consultation should take place with communities and stakeholder.

"Appropriate" wastes

Both the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) have also backed the recovery of energy from "appropriate" wastes.

John Ferguson, manager of SEPA's waste and resource strategy unit said: "SEPA believes that the recovery of energy from appropriate wastes, given the inherent value of waste which can be lost in landfill, is fully compatible with zero waste, provided there is a significant and targeted commitment to waste prevention and recycling."

A COSLA spokesman said that while recycling was its preferred means of reducing waste sent to landfill, it was not enough to meet European targets for landfill diversion in 2013 and 2020.

The spokesman continued: "The SDC's report recognises the role of energy-from-waste in a comprehensive strategy aimed at diverting waste from landfill - one which COSLA looks forward to working on alongside Scottish Government partners.

"Energy-from-waste is a safe, tried and tested way to deal with waste that cannot be recycled, and is commonly used across Europe. Energy from waste is not an alternative to recycling - it is just one component of a sensible and practical waste strategy."


The Sustainable Development Commission report also looked at wider issues when it comes to waste, and hailed the bid to achieve Zero Waste as a means to shift policy towards "resource efficiency".

It explained: "Government has struggled to shift its attention from recycling to waste prevention. Without a change of focus to prevention, many stakeholders will not have confidence that energy-from-waste is being used as part of the solution, rather than instead of wider action.

"The adoption of the framework of Zero Waste should give government a clearer direction."

The Commission also urged the Scottish Government to review recycling targets and push them above and beyond 55% by 2020, stating this "would certainly be possible".

However, it was critical of some local authorities which it claimed were failing to take seriously the need to recycle and reduce waste.

Related links
It said: "While some local authorities are making good progress on recycling, it is clear that others are finding this difficult and do not see recycling or activities further up the waste hierarchy as a core part of their waste management duties."

The Commission also called for ministers to integrate measures for tackling business waste into its new policy, as well as a more joined-up approach to planning, economic development and energy policies.

Gary Liss       
Fax: 916-652-0485

Gary Liss       
Fax: 916-652-0485

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