Plymouth’s MVV Energy from Waste facility urge that incineration of plastic should not be an alternative to recycling when dealing with the UK’s overflow of recyclable waste.
After China announced a ban on surplus plastic exports from the UK in January, some councils are considering incineration as a substitute to recycling.
Jane Ford community liaison manager from Devonport EfW said: “Every part of the waste management system has its place, anaerobic digestion is a good solution to food waste, recycling is an excellent solution for: paper, card, plastic and metals, and energy from waste is a better solution to landfill.
“I think for the councils that were using China as a market it is an issue, and maybe they need help to access a market for a wider variety of plastics.”
Looking in to the future Jane suggested that “a two-pronged approach is needed where councils have better processing facilities, or access to better processing facilities for a wider range of plastics.
“And manufactures are limited to the number of different types of plastics they are allowed to produce.”
Reducing plastic waste to prevent extended harm to aquatic ecosystems was one of the clear messages at EfW’s open day on the 24thOctober.
An emotive interactive performance given by environmental artist Judy Harrington, communicated to visitors the damaging effects of plastic pollution.
The community liaison manager said: “Once plastic is made it can stay in the system, so we don’t need to keep making more or finding markets, we just need to properly recycle it.”