Rubbish – SNP massively reduces polluting landfill!

Headlining in the Herald today:

Scottish ministers have been urged to follow through on a pledge to ban the burning of waste after new statistics revealed the capacity to do so has increased sevenfold since the SNP came to power.

Here’s a thought – why are councils incinerating more. Is it something to do with reducing landfill?

“There are a number of reasons why incinerating waste is preferred by many nations around the world, including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Energy. Some countries, such as those in Scandinavia, have poured significant resources into determining the value of waste materials as fuel feedstock. Sweden, for instance, gains as much as 8% of its total heating energy from combusted waste.
  • Efficiency. Because incineration can reduce the amount of waste which must be diverted to landfill by as much as 95%, it’s an efficient method of dealing with the issue. It also eliminates the need to transport the waste to other locations (or countries!), thus cutting down on the emissions involved in that stage of the process.
  • Space. In smaller countries where space is at a premium, there is simply no room to store waste in landfills. Incineration can solve the problem in these scenarios, as it does in the diminutive but populous island nation of Japan, for example.
  • Methane. When waste is left to decay in landfills, it can produce plentiful amounts of methane. This is undesirable due to the global concerns over methane as a greenhouse gas and contributor to climate change.”,that%20stage%20of%20the%20process.

Has the SNP reduced landfill?

We sent approximately 2.6 million tonnes of material to landfill in 2020, less than half of what we sent in 2005. The proportion of waste sent to landfill has decreased from 43% in 2011 to 32% in 2018. This trend has been driven by a number of factors, including increased landfill taxes, a marked shift from landfill to incineration, improved recycling rates and upstream management of waste, and the upcoming ban on sending biodegradable municipal waste (BMW) to landfill.

8 thoughts on “Rubbish – SNP massively reduces polluting landfill!

  1. What are the options , burn it , bury it recycle it or send it to Africa.I think the Scottish government do the first three .I think Westminster prefers sending to Africa.London cannot bury it there is nowhere to bury it.London won’t burn it they are already suffering too much smog.London will recycle and London will send to Africa.
    The Herald wants Scottish government to send to Africa , bad choice amongst the many bad choices the Herald has made.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. There has always much bunkum in circulation over waste disposal, not least on the vexed topic of incineration.
    There was a plan in Limerick to use both the sludge and methane from the new WWTP at the Cement factory as part fuel stock, a win-win scenario for both until environmental activists got involved and shot the scheme and the environment in the foot by stirring up the locals to object.
    By allowing prejudice and “principle” to override scientific proofs that the result would have been LESS pollution, everybody lost out.

    SG’s policy is logical, but as the recent row over recycling showed, there are powerful lobbies determined to undermine it for purely political reasons.

    I wouldn’t expect David Bol to understand any of it when he is only in search of that “exclusive” – Nor would I expect the Herald’s environment correspondent to flesh out the detail since the Editor would red-line it as “insufficiently negative”.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You can of course use the heat produced from burning the waste to heat homes. A more environmentally friendly option. This from Norway:

    Or burn the waste in power stations to produce electricity. I saw such a power station when I was in Copenhagen a few years ago. Their problem was that Denmark did not produce enough waste so they had to import waste from the UK and other places

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Indeed – Scandinavians are more clued up on the environment than most with a long history of innovations.
      eg “In 1937, the first closed composting system (in-vessel) denominated “DANO drums system” with the slogan “Domestic residues for organic manure”, appeared in Denmark. In the next 25 years in Denmark 19 facilities with the Dano system were established, and others were exported to the U.S.A., South America, the Middle East, the Far East, Australia and many European countries”

      The technology has moved on but so has the public in these countries, whilst defending the environment to the hilt.
      The “incineration” isn’t a prejudicial term there as they know the flue gases are scrubbed free of damaging by-products by design, and rigidly policed…

      Liked by 2 people

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