Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Beddington residents speak out against incinerator

Representatives from Viridor, including their Communications Manager, Victor Perez-Mares, gave a presentation to the Beddington residents on the 18th January.

The community in Beddington have been treated appallingly by the authorities. For decades promises and pledges have been broken. This video, recorded on my mobile phone, doesn't really illustrate enough how vociferous the residents were at the meeting regarding these latest plans.

Cr7 Green's blog explains the situation in his own inimitable way here.

Green GLA candidate Gordon Ross wrote a piece for the local Guardian's Xtra column, discussing his thoughts on the meeting:

Croydon Xtra: Proposed Beddington Incinerator.

Beddington Lane on the Sutton/Croydon border is the location for a proposed waste incinerator by the company Viridor, which if built will cost the taxpayer £200 million to build, and a further £700 million to operate over 25 years.

The South London Waste Plan which has allowed this proposed incinerator is flawed, and was skewed towards incineration from the start. The Councils involved have simply gone for the quickest easiest way to get rid of the waste, which is also the most profitable route for the waste companies, it is far from the best option for people’s health and the environment.

The public consultation never really allowed alternatives, such as waste reduction, increased re-use and recycling, composting to be discussed, nor did it allow discussion of the health and environmental impact of incineration. These important issues should be part of the waste plan, but they are not.

Viridor and the Councils call the incinerator “an energy from waste facility”, but burning waste is a very dirty and inefficient way to generate electricity, not to mention a waste of resources that should be recycled instead. The £200 million cost of building this facility would have been better spent on waste reduction, re-use, recycling, composting and anaerobic digestion facilities, which have much less impact on the environment and people’s health.

Burning rubbish produces toxic ash, carbon dioxide (the green house gas), dioxins and over 200 other toxic chemicals. Composting and other biological processes are harmless in comparison.

On Wednesday 18th January Beddington residents met with representative of Viridor, the waste company, Council officials, to find out about the proposal.

The mood of the residents was one of frustration and anger, that their problems with pollution, noise and heavy lorries from existing waste sites on Beddington Lane still haven’t been resolved, and now they are told they are to get even more lorries, noise and pollution from a vast new incinerator. The incinerator will have to be supplied by lorries transporting the 375,000 tonnes of rubbish a year they plan to burn. The noise and pollution from these lorries is an unacceptable burden to expect the people of Beddington to put up with. Enough is enough! The council needs to address the real problems facing the residents, not heap more rubbish onto their community.

I doubt very much that Beddington would have been chosen as the site for an incinerator if it had lots of well-off residents, who could afford expensive lawyers to mount a legal challenge to this plan.

Gordon Ross

Sutton & Croydon Green Party

GLA constituency candidate for Sutton & Croydon

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1 comment: said...

There are various meetings going on - both those in the Virdidor leaflet which local resident should have, but also a Health Impact Assessment taking place on Sat 17th March 11am - 1pm and Mon 19th March 7pm - 9pm at the Beddington Conference Centre Please do attend if you can - need to email. call to get a place - 02032065456 or It is vital if you want to get informed and get your views heard - this may be our last opportunity for local people

Standing up for what matters