dealing with hampshires waste

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					Dealing with Hampshire’s waste -
The proposed solution
Hampshire, along with many other local authorities in the UK, is finding that
implementing effective ways of managing domestic waste is becoming
increasingly difficult. We have an acute household rubbish problem and are
running out of time to resolve it, unless action is taken quickly.

This document contains proposals for dealing with your household rubbish right in to
the second decade of the new millennium. We need you to consider the proposals
now because the problem is urgent.

The paper was produced in September 1995


The Waste Problem in Hampshire

The Proposals

We need your comments

What Happens Next

Hampshire, along with many other local authorities in the UK, is finding that
implementing effective ways of managing domestic waste is becoming increasingly
difficult. We have an acute household rubbish problem and are running out of time to
resolve it, unless action is taken quickly.

Rubbish has now become a big issue. Many people already see the environmental
implications of living in a 'throw away' society. They dislike the waste of natural
resources and the environmental impacts of the processes we use to dispose of
waste. Clearly we need to do more to conserve our natural resources and to see that
what we buy can also be reused and recycled. This means that a new and more
complex system for dealing with waste is required.

Our old solutions no longer meet the problem and new solutions do not always
receive public support. For example:

    o   achieving higher levels of recycling requires a complex system which is only
        now coming into place. More recycling means that new facilities are built,
        secure markets found for reclaimed material, and the public participate.
    o   today’s generation of incinerator’s are much superior to old ones. Not only do
        they produce energy using our rubbish but emissions have been reduced
        significantly. Despite this people continue to be concerned about them being
        included in a waste strategy.
    o   although most people want a sustainable solution which sees Hampshire
        looking after its own waste, no one wants a landfill site in their back yard.

This document contains proposals for dealing with your household rubbish right into
the second decade of the new millennium. We need you to consider the proposals
and comment NOW because the problem is urgent. Decisions will need to be taken in
early 1996 to set in motion the process for building a new range of facilities to handle
the waste we produce.

Please read this document, discuss it with others and let us know whether you agree
with the proposals; provide us with any comments or concerns; and if you disagree
please let us have your alternatives.Write to the address on the back page, where all
responses from everywhere in Hampshire are being co-ordinated.

Getting rid of rubbish seems to generate a big public debate every 25 to 30 years. In
the early 1970s our rubbish tips were filling up and no acceptable replacements were
available in the more urbanised parts of the county. In order to protect Hampshire's
countryside five incinerators were built, which reduced the volume of waste by a third.
These incinerators were expensive to build but have done their job very well. They
have saved about four million tonnes of rubbish going direct to landfill, equivalent to
saving five medium-sized landfill sites. During their lives we have learnt much more
about the emissions they produce and steps have been taken to substantially reduce

Now, these incinerators are reaching the end of their lives. By the end of 1996 they
will close as they will not meet European regulations.

Meanwhile, in spite of the waste handled by the incinerators, household waste
continued to grow - from 615,000 tonnes in 1988 to 738,000 tonnes in 1995 and the
landfill sites continued to fill up. Many sites have already become full (of the 17 sites
that existed in 1988 only eight now remain). Those remaining are almost full and in
many places there are no acceptable replacements.

New solutions, such as expanded recycling programmes, are now coming into place
but require different collection systems and processing plants as well as a publicity
programme to encourage people to participate. In 1991 Hampshire recycled under
5% of its household waste, and this included the metals produced from a metal
extraction unit in one of the incinerators.

The progress being made by the district authorities (who have the statutory
responsibility for collecting waste), will see in place by the end of 1995 the largest
doorstep collection system for recyclable material in the UK, and one of the largest in
Europe. Already 11 out of the 13 districts have introduced pilot collection schemes
and soon some 155,000 homes will be able to put out paper, card, plastic, glass,
cans, and/or compostables in a separate box or bag ready to be taken to three new
materials recycling facilities (MRFs: pronounced MURFs) where they are processed
and sent on to recycling plants for reuse.

Already the recycling rate in these areas has risen to 15-20% and the county average
has moved up to 8%. District authorities are planning to have all suitable households
on this system within five years. Although we expect to see different rates in different
areas the Government target of 25% is within sight.

We are very pleased with this progress and are told that, for a population the size
(1.5 million) and diversity (land mass and large rural population) of Hampshire, that
there are no schemes in either Europe or the USA that have achieved this level in
such a short time. This has led us to set a potential recycling rate of 40% in our
proposed waste management strategy. We have adopted this target after
investigating many other locations for which much higher percentages had been
quoted. We have found that they included large volumes of commercial waste in their
calculations, or were small pilot programmes with very different geographic and social
challenges from those of Hampshire.

In spite of these efforts there will still be over 440,000 tonnes of non-recyclable or
residual waste to deal with annually. Waste also continues to increase at a rate of
between 1-3% each year.

It was because of the recognition that this problem lay ahead that, in 1986, the
County Council (which has the statutory responsibility for disposing of the waste
collected by district authorities), started work on a Waste Management Plan. This
plan surveyed how much landfill was left, considered how many tonnes of waste
would need to be disposed of in the future, and also considered the need to do much
more than merely getting rid of it.

The plan suggested that processes for waste minimisation, reuse and recycling
needed to be put in place so that the amount of waste needing final disposal could be
greatly reduced. It also proposed new incinerators that could produce electricity using
the rubbish that could not be recycled as a fuel. Three tonnes of waste is equivalent
to one tonne of coal.

In 1991 the County Council began to consult on the proposals which were based on
this plan. They included a proposal to build a new energy from waste incinerator in
Portsmouth to handle the residual rubbish produced in the southern part of the county
-some 350,000 tonnes in total.

Projects of this size take several years to develop, obtain the necessary planning and
operating permissions as well as a further two years to build. It was hoped that the
new facility would be up and running before the existing network was exhausted. In
the event this plan was unsuccessful because people in the area expressed concern
with the size and impact of the proposal. Two points emerged from the debate:

First, people wanted evidence that local authorities were committed to waste
minimisation, and were prepared to put in place the necessary facilities to enable
residents to reuse and recycle as much waste as possible.

Second, there was vociferous opposition to both the process of incineration, and to
new landfill facilities. People asked for evidence that emissions and other health and
safety impacts could be controlled, and that they would be consulted and involved in
designing an appropriate way forward.

Although the abandtonment of the Portsmouth proposal was a major setback which
placed pressure on existing facilities, it had the positive outcome ofgetting people
involved in the debate. All the Hampshire local authorities - the 13 district councils
that collect our rubbish, and the County Council that arranges for its treatment and
disposal, got together to produce a new approach. They also agreed to put in place
an extensive consultation process with Hampshire residents to ensure that the new
plan was communicated, and citizen concerns identified and addressed.

We plan to expand existing and develop new waste minimisation programmes. We
have set a target to keep the amount of dustbin waste at existing levels taking into
account population increase. With waste levels currently expanding at a rate of 1-3%
a year we believe that this will be an important target to reach or exceed.

The activities highlighted in the centre section of this document have received very
favourable support and the suggestions made by the various groups will he co-
ordinated in a countywide waste minimisation plan.

In spite of these activities we believe that 800,000 tonnes of waste will still be left to
be dealt with in the year 2000.

The purpose of this document is to seek your views prior to the final choice being
made early in 1996. It is vital for you to have your say now because next year's
decision will set in place a system that will form the basis of the infrastructure that is
expected to last for the next 25 years. HWS need to be given a firm specification to
implement Project Integra.

We would like your response to the following questions

The overall strategy:

Do you agree that the overall strategy is an appropriate way forward, aiming to:

     o    increase efforts to minimise waste and keep dustbin waste at 1995 levels?
     o    increase recycling through household kerbside pick-up and increased
          composting to reach a potential 40% recycling rate?
     o    seek to recover energy from residual waste by energy from waste
          incineration and anaerobic digestion.
     o    dispose of the remaining waste in landfill in Hampshire, or, until sufficient
          space is available, in another county?

If not:

     o    What would you change and why? How else would you to deal with the
          waste remaining other than by landfill?
     o    Is there anything that you think that Hampshire residents could do to help
        achieve this and other parts of the waste management strategy?

Waste Minimisation

As indicated, the strategy calls for an increased effort in waste minimisation so as to
keep dustbin waste volumes at 1995 volumes.

    o   Do you feel this could be achieved?
    o   What do you think Hampshire will have to do to ensure this happens?


The strategy calls for a dramatically increased effort to improve existing recycling
totals, aiming for a 40% average recycling rate across the county. This will require not
only the active participation of Hampshire residents but also national markets to
reprocess the recycled materials into useful products.

    o   Do you have any doubts or concerns with achieving a recycling rate of 25%
        moving to 40% over time?
    o   What additional actions do you think will be necessary to reach this target?


The only feasible options for disposal of residual waste are incineration and/or landfill.

The stategy calls for the building of three new energy-from-waste incinerators to
replace the existing five incinerators after they shut down in 1996. The new facilities
will be designed with a capacity that represents 75% of the waste remaining.

    o   Does the proposal for incineration with energy recovery give rise to any
        specific concerns?
    o   At present the option for non-incineration is landfill. Would you prefer
        extensive use of landfill to incineration with energy recovery?

Responsiveness to 'host' community

We know that few people want to see a waste facility built in their area, and yet we
must start to build the facilities that will ensure that waste is managed effectively well
into the next century.

    o   Do you think that the proposed process (consultative groups) and opportunity
        to comment on the planning application debate will to ensure that the views
        of local residents are heard?
    o   Are there any additional steps that the county and districts could take to
        address community concern?


Landfill will continue to be necessary for some of the waste remaining, including bulky
household rubbish. It would also be used for the ash from the incinerators until such
time as this also can be recycled into useful products for construction use. Much of
the landfill in Hampshire is now either full or reaching capacity and, unless additional
sites become available, it is likely that waste will have to be disposed of through land
raising or, on an interim basis, to out-of-county sites.
    o   Do you feel this is the right way to go?
    o   Do you have any concerns or additional suggestions?

From now until mid-December is an important period, as we would like your
responses to the questions by then. We want the views of as many people as
possible, so as well as community organisations, environmental groups and other
formal groups we aim to get as many individuals involved.

Copies of this document will be distributed widely. A summary leaflet will be available
in libraries, local information points and other public places. We will also seek local
media coverage as well as continuing with a public awareness campaign.

A number of groups will be set up in each of the three regions where views and
opinions focusing on the questions in this document will be sought from local
residents. We will also conduct further research to gauge people's views.

Early in 1996 a decision will need to be made by the local authorities on the specific
proposals so that Hampshire Waste Services can proceed to put in place an
integrated and flexible system by the end of the century. As part of this process HWS
will make final decisions about choice of sites.

Write to the address below where all responses from everywhere in Hampshire are
being co-ordinated.

Waste Consultation Section
County Surveyor's Department
Hampshire County Council
The Castle
Hampshire, S023 8UD

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