Letter: Journal promotes incineration industry line

The Journal Editorial’s bald support for waste incineration (Journal, 9th August) raises the fiction that technology has miraculously made waste burning safe.  Those who ran the Byker incinerator may have made similar claims.

There is no such thing as safe waste incineration, and there is no such thing as a safe level of pollution.  Killer chemicals known as dioxins are produced by waste incineration and have been linked to breast and testicular cancers.  An US Environmental Protection Agency study estimated that as many as 7% of all cancers are caused by dioxins, and British research has linked dioxins to the rapid rise of the painful disease endometriosis among women.

Not only do incinerators spew out poisonous clouds, but once the waste is burned the remaining toxic slag still has to be buried in a landfill, presenting further risk to public health.

Added to this is the rising threat of climate change.  Incinerators, no matter how green you try to paint them with cynical euphemisms about ‘energy recovery’, produce CO2 – and tons of it.  There are safer and cheaper methods of recovering value from waste without burning it.

Incineration is outdated, dangerous and unsustainable – it must be stopped.


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