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A Strong Case for Delaying Any Decision on Incinerator

January 12, 2010 5:38 PM

The current recycling targets being used by the "Project Transform" partnership of Warwickshire, Coventry & Solihull councils are far too low, say the Liberal Democrats. This could result in a giant incinerator being built that is the wrong technology and too big for possible future needs.

In comments published in the Warwickshire Telegraph yesterday, Coun. John Whitehouse (Kenilworth Abbey), the party's environment spokesman, said that the target to recycle and compost 50 per cent of household waste by 2020 is "pessimistic" and that he believes they have over-estimated the amount of non-recyclable waste that will be generated in the future.

He said "If we go a long way down the procurement process thinking we're going to build a 300,000 tonne plant and at the end we only need half that, we may well have discarded some of the best technology options by then.

"Our national Lib Dem party perspective is that incineration is the last option, primarily because of the environmental concerns but also it ties you to a lengthy 25-year contract.

"Incineration is all about large-scale long-term projects as opposed to more modular technologies that can be extended according to need, giving you long-term flexibility.

"The future is so unpredictable, there is a very strong case for delaying these decisions, and if we really do have to press the button, going for something that can be built on in a modular way."