Incinerator questions that need proper answers

SIR – I write with respect to the proposed siting of an industrial incinerator at New Barnfield, Hatfield. I was a teacher of biology, geology and environmental studies to A Level and have a first class hons degree equivalent and am a member of the Biolo

SIR - I write with respect to the proposed siting of an industrial incinerator at New Barnfield, Hatfield.

I was a teacher of biology, geology and environmental studies to A Level and have a first class hons degree equivalent and am a member of the Biological Institute by examination.

Please can someone answer the following questions?:

1. Is the council aware that the highly toxic fly ash resulting from incinerator use must be disposed of in a specialist site designated for the purpose?


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2. Is the council aware that the bottom ash will contain amounts of vanadium, manganese, chromium, nickel arsenic, mercury, lead and cadmium, all of which are toxic even in minute amounts?

3. Is the council aware of the differences between fly ash and bottom ash?

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4. Is the council aware that 33,000 doctors have expressed concerns about pollution by fly ash particulates, commonly one part in 500 and the increase in infant mortality in areas surrounding incinerators of the type envisaged?

5. Is the council aware that the drainage system from the stream going underground at Water End, arising in Borehamwood and ending up in the Lea at Hertford lies directly adjacent and possibly underneath the New Barnfield site affording the probability of water pollution?

6. Is the council aware of the tremendous amount of vehicle activity necessary to keep such a site in operation resulting in noise levels to the houses adjacent to South Way?

7. Is the council aware that house values anywhere in the vicinity of large incinerators suffer a price fall of approximately 10 per cent?

It is clear to me that for a number of reasons the environmental health department at both the borough and county councils know little of the problems associated with incinerators near housing and even less about the special problems associated with the New Barnfield site.

Of course there are commercial interests involved.

But it would appear to me that any council worth its salt would not hesitate to cancel this incinerator scheme.

I am also informed that the cost of using an incinerator compared with other methods of waste disposal is adverse and has an associated bill of plus �27 per metric ton.

R Harrison MIBiol (Hons),

Old Leys, Hatfield.

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