Issue 24 August 2002

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Should they burn rubbish in the centre of our city?
by Andrew Green

Decision time is coming for the new incinerator proposal. The Council Planning Board will meet soon, probably in September, to decide on Onyx’s application to replace the current incinerator with a giant twice the size.

Onyx, a subsidiary of troubled French-based transnational Vivendi, argues that burning waste is the only viable alternative to putting it into landfill, such as Parkwood. At least burning ‘recovers’ the energy locked up in waste and uses it to heat buildings and generate electricity, they claim.

Objectors, such as local campaigners RABID, Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, say landfill is not the only alternative to incineration. Recycling could dispose of virtually all waste, if only the Council and Onyx would invest in organising its collection and reuse or sale.

In practice, Sheffield does not produce enough rubbish to feed this monster. To achieve financial viability, Onyx would have to import waste from Rotherham and Derbyshire.

Our picture shows what the new incinorator will look like next to the existing chimney, which will also stay.

The replacement building would be a major new landmark in the Don Valley, greeting us every morning. Is it one we want?

RABID is encouraging people to attend the Planning Board meeting and express their views. To find out more, contact IMPACT on 0114 223 0225.

The proposed "Monster Rubish Burner".