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Letter to the editor: why we protested at Shire Hall

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Dear sir,

I was part of an action yesterday outside Shire Hall in Gloucester to make sure that my council knows that I am deeply disgusted by the fact that our council, which has declared a climate emergency, has wasted public money on the environmentally and financially indefensible Javelin Park Incinerator.   

The incinerator has been built on the back of flawed science.

GCC would have us believe that incinerators burn waste which would otherwise go to landfill. This is a myth – 93 per cent of what is in the bin, can be reused or recycled.

It is a myth that incinerators do not hinder recycling – they in fact HINDER recycling, UK councils with the highest incineration rates have the lowest recycling rates.

GCC would have us believe that incinerators do not create pollution. This is a HUGE myth, they emit more than one billion toxic particles per second poisoning the air we breathe, our land and our rivers.

GCC would have us believe that incinerators cost less that the alternatives, when in fact they cost millions to build and are 25 per cent more expensive to run than recycling and renewable energy schemes combined.

The action yesterday, held by Extinction Rebellion Gloucestershire, was also to raise awareness of the impending Public Interest Report into the alleged procurement irregularities by Gloucestershire County Council (GCC). Public Interest Reports are very rare and only occur when serious failings in financial management, wrongful spending of public money are suspected so this is potentially dynamite for GCC officials.

XR Glos are calling for GCC to be held to account for this poor use of public funds and to stop spending taxpayers’ money investing in an out-dated and environmentally damaging approach to dealing with household waste that is at total odds with tackling the declared climate emergency. 

Chris Wheeler

Extinction Rebellion Gloucestershire

Editor’s note: views expressed here are entirely those of the contributor.

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