The NSW government is pushing ahead with integrating the incineration of waste into the state’s environmental regulations.
The draft regulation is open for public consultation until 20 March.
The government announced last September that waste to energy projects could be developed in four regional centres – West Lithgow, Parkes, Richmond Valley and Goulburn.
The announcement was followed by controversy and confusion, which is continuing. Local councils in the targeted regional communities have had mixed reactions and a protest group has formed in Goulburn.
Meanwhile city anti-incineration groups which have opposed projects in Western Sydney and Matraville for many years have not been able to clarify whether incineration in city locations will be banned. The government says they will make exceptions to allow some projects outside the designated areas to go ahead. Which ones? We don’t know.
Knitting Nannas oppose the incineration of waste in city or regional locations for a lot of reasons including:
Risks to Human Health: Incineration produces toxic pollutants like dioxins that can accumulate in people, the food chain and environment and add to existing levels of air pollution. There is no safe level of air pollution.
Urgent need for a Circular Economy: Incineration of waste will slow down the necessary transition to a circular economy – particularly regulations to drastically reduce the creation of waste, reuse of unavoidable waste and moves to include the cost of waste in its production. Proponents argue that only “residual” waste will be burnt – but they don’t discuss or define which wastes they regard as residual. Energy from waste projects increase the market for waste and the need to generate profit from it.
Nannas will be having our say on the future of waste in NSW and we encourage you to do so too. Have your say on Energy from Waste Regulation by 20 March.
Links to community groups:
Tarago (Goulburn) – Sign the petition
Eastern Suburbs – Object Now
Western Suburbs – Facebook updates