From Lara Luke.
I HAVE a few questions that I would like ‘the rebel backbench incinerator gang’ to ask Environment Minister Freddie Cohen.
Firstly, how does the incinerator fit in with the concept of wise use, as stated in the Ramsar convention; can they promise that there will be no change in the ecology of the wetlands?
Two of important considerations of the wise use concept are the maintenance of water quality and the abatement of pollution. Can we really say that the incinerator is promoting the wise use of wetlands? I think not.
Failure to recognise conventions to which we have signed up could lead to political and diplomatic discomfort globally. If there was no intention of deceiving Ramsar about the incinerator (JEP, 22 January), then please could Senator Cohen say exactly what correspondence there has been between Jersey and Ramsar. I would like to know if they agreed to the incinerator being classed as promoting ‘wise use’.
Senator Cohen says the view of the department was that airborne emissions were not a threat to the environment around the incinerator, which includes the protected zone. I would like to know why this is. Who gave the authors the information for the EIA? Who decided to omit any consideration to air pollutants from the EIA? Is it because under the exemptions law they can pump whatever pollutants they want out of the JEC chimney?
Do they think that because the chimney is exempt from any regulations, it means there will miraculously be no pollutants? Senator Cohen has chosen his words well. You can’t contradict what he is saying, but if you look into the words, it tells a different story.
What he is effectively saying is ‘we can ignore the air pollutants from the incinerator (which is not all that much improved in comparison to Bellozane) because it’s OK, we can pump them straight through the JEC chimney. It’s exempt from any regulations under the law, so we can pretend the air pollutants don’t exist.’
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