Monday, June 26, 2006

The Art of Burning Waste

Photo: The rather eccentric looking incinerator on the Isle of Man!

In the UK we currently deal with every 10 bags of rubbish in the following way: 6 landfill; 2 recycle ; 2 burnt in incinerator. We are struggling to recycle fast enough in order to avoid more landfilling so, the government is pushing for more incineration-to-power plants. Trouble is, as usual, no wants an incinerator in their back yard. In the Bexley area of Kent for example residents have been fighting such a proposal for 13 years. A smaller plant has now been given the go ahead. To be fair new EU legislation has meant all incinerators have had to improve their filter technology on their stacks so as to emit fewer pollutants. A site in North London was closed for a number of months just so these new filters could be installed.

The interesting part of the rubbish debate is the NIMBY effect, where the selfish gene of the human psyche rears its ugly head. Everyone contributes to the weekly rubbish pickup from their front gate but, obviously no-one wants to see it dumped at the end of their road! Still, it has to be dealt with somehow and somewhere. It is also grossly unfair that poorer neighbourhoods take the rubbish from the 'leafy' suburbs. OK, maybe building these incinerators out in the countryside is one solution. Apart from country folk objecting there is the problem of getting waste to the plant. River transport is one way that will be used to get rubbish from London to the new Bexley incinerator. A mature debate is necessary on each and every incinerator proposal but it must not be allowed to be hijacked NIMBY-ism!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Scadbury Park

Photo: Old moat house

This picture and more like it of Scadbury Park in south London can be found at and by clicking on 'The London loop in Bromley'. Here you'll find some information about a wonderful part of Bromley, with its calves, horses and working farm, as well as ancient woods. Our lot were down there in the weekend doing biodiversity mapping of the hedge rows.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Go hug a tree this week!

photo: article.php3?aid=34

London is in the middle of London Sustainability Weeks, which is promoting many local events around the city on the themes of community and sustainability. Info at; . Make it real!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Road turbines

Driving along the A13 out of London yesterday I almost drove off the road. Suddenly out of nowhere appeared two huge wind turbines. I obviously hadn't been down this way for some time as these lovely beasts have been on the skyline for 2 years now. They looked so graceful as their blades swished through the relatively calm day.

They were commissioned by Ford's Dagenham site to power their diesel engine plant. More detail from the installers Ecotricity can be found at .

Of course no objections to the installation of the turbines could have been made on the grounds of turbine noise thanks to the road noise nearby. Not so sure the same could be said about traffic safety however!

Photo: view from one of the turbines, over East London. .