Incinerator is a betrayal of democracy and a danger to health

SIR – Regarding New Barnfield, Hatfield, incineration. What are our county councillors up to? The county s incineration proposals are a betrayal of the people of Hertfordshire and the surrounding counties. It will be an unmitigated, unwarranted and unnec

SIR - Regarding New Barnfield, Hatfield, incineration. What are our county councillors up to?

The county's incineration proposals are a betrayal of the people of Hertfordshire and the surrounding counties.

It will be an unmitigated, unwarranted and unnecessary disaster for more than a 30-kilometre radius around the site.

This proposal is also a betrayal of democracy; our democracy is being hijacked.


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Previously, county and all 10 district or borough authorities in Hertfordshire set up a committee, chaired by councillor Tarry and including technical officers, to look into the whole question of waste management.

They looked into all alternative, available, technologies, including incineration, and concluded unanimously that "incineration is not the answer", and also, it has no place in a modern society.

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This view was approved by all 10 local councils and then by the county council.

This view was formed over many weeks by interviews, visits and discussions and was based on findings that there are safer, cheaper, more reliable and more flexible alternatives, that do not destroy valuable recourses, do not pollute and will not destroy the value of homes in a vast area and leave county with some control over them.

Incineration is a 19th century solution to a 21st century problem. When the rest of the world is abandoning incineration, Hertfordshire, it appears, welcomes it.

Incinerators require 100-plus meter-high stacks, a 25-year minimum contract, they do not retrieve valuable diminishing resources, and pollution spreads many miles depending on wind.

Pollutants, such as dioxins, lead, and mercury, etc, are only measured in the stack every three months, "by appointment" and, if too high, more air is pushed up the stack as pollution is measured in units per cubic meter of air.

Mothers on the continent, where regulations are tighter, are advised not to breast feed their babies beyond three months old because of dioxins in the milk.

In the UK, ministry random sampling of milk found it had such high levels of dioxin in it that the milk (and the cows) had to be disposed of in a 'hazardous waste incinerator'.

The farm was 20 kilometres from the local incinerator. The milk was feeding the local population!

Incinerators also 'dump' into the local sewer, arsenic, chromium, lead, cadmium, mercury, hydrogen fluoride and many others.

Is the public really expected to accept all this?

M Riches,

Address supplied.

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