Thursday, May 28, 2009

Leader of Labour Group's response and my rebuttal

I sent in the above letter to the Croydon Guardian earlier this month about the looming spectre of an incinerator being built.

Cllr Newman responded with this astonishing reply:

Things are more clearer if you refer to this posting.
Anyhow, I sent in the rebuttal (below) which I am relieved to see was published in yesterdays Croydon Guardian.

Dear Editor,

Labour councillor Tony Newman’s response to my letter smacks of desperation. The Green Party are opposed to incineration, yet Cllr Newman has sought to manufacture the Green party’s initial position as somehow being alongside the Tories in favour of incineration! He similarly manufactured a story in Labour’s Waddon by election leaflet. That time Labour claimed to have found a secret document showing that an incinerator was going to be built in Factory Lane. How desperate. Back then the Green Party did brand Labour’s behaviour as disgraceful for playing dirty politics with a serious issue. It was the Tories who described the tactic as scaremongering to win votes. We took a responsible approach and raised concerns that an incinerator in Beddington was the likely outcome of an ongoing consultation. Unlike any other party the Greens submitted a 5000 word document opposing incineration and even met with the Project Manager.

Hasn’t Cllr Newman learnt anything from the events in the last couple of weeks? People across the country are fed up with sleaze and old style dirty politics and are turning to fresh alternatives. Notable figures like Joanna Lumley and Martin Bell – the MP in the white suit - have publically backed the Green Party to clean up politics for a better future.
That said I and my colleagues are prepared to work with anyone that opposes incineration for the sake of Croydon. Cllr Newman rightly points out incinerators belch out dangerous air. But maybe he can start by having a word with his Labour colleagues in the European parliament who voted alongside their Tory counterparts to rebrand incinerators as ‘energy from waste plants’. He could then have a word with Labour MP’s who have just handed a £113 million grant to Croydon, and three neighbouring boroughs, to build such a plant.

The Green Party’s position is principled and clear, across the country, in whatever tier of government. We stand for what we believe in: Recycle, reuse and compost is the solution to our landfill crisis.

People of Croydon want their politics just like they want their air: clean.

Yours sincerely,

Shasha Khan
Green Party European Parliament candidate for London

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Sue said...

Excellent letter Mr Khan!

Croydon e Trader said...

Whilst I applaud the aims of the green party. I'm curious as to what proposals it has for Croydon's small business community. If a case or dialogue can be made on the imapct on a businesses's bottom line then it should be being communicated more effectively.

Shasha Khan said...

Thank you for your comment. In no particular order:

House prices have been shown to drop in areas affected by incineration pollution. This would have a knock on effect on level of disposable income available to potential local customers.

Incineration requires far fewer jobs to run than comprehensive recycling programmes; more jobs more money to spend. Studies show there are 10X as many jobs in recycling than in incineration.

Should the contractually guaranteed fuel streams not be met, and profits affected, the Council would be forced to pay fines. These, in turn, would have to be raised from taxation.

Reputation, population avoidance of area, parents will avoid the local schools so footfall will fall in businesses. Think of the smell around Beddington sewage works already.

Whole business of lots more lorries thundering through Beddington lane - jams predicted, that’s not good for business.

Standing up for what matters