From Gerald White.
I READ with some alarm about the Constable of St Helier’s plans for recycling. I am not against recycling as such, but I am against paying twice for the same thing, and that is what we shall all end up doing if our unjoined-up government persists with funding two competing waste management strategies.
The States have decided (at least twice) on a green approach to waste management, which is to burn it in a waste-to-energy plant. This is ‘green’ because it will reduce the amount of fossil fuel that would otherwise be burned to make electricity. I know that most of Jersey’s electricity is French, and much of France’s electricity is nuclear-generated, but it is all part of a Europe-wide electricity grid, at least some of which is supplied by burning coal, oil or gas which will be replaced by our incinerator’s contribution. The plant will cost taxpayers £100m plus running costs.
The Constable also wants to fund kerbside waste collection so that a lot of what is collected ‘will not go into the waste stream’. This is a competing waste management strategy to that agreed by the States, and it is only acceptable to me as a taxpayer and ratepayer if it can be achieved at a profit. I was informed by someone working at Bellozanne last summer that the only recycled items that turned a profit at that time were plastic bottles.
And I would be very interested to know the current fully costed position for each category of recyclable material.
While recycling at a loss may be acceptable now, if it diverts items from our currently overloaded old incinerator, it will not be acceptable once the new plant is up and running.
At that point, all items must be burned, other than those that can be recycled at a demonstrable profit — or we shall all end up paying twice for waste management, first as taxpayers and then again as ratepayers.
La Haute Ferme House,