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June 26th, 2013:

Incinerators double childhood cancer | Greenpeace UK
Incinerators double childhood cancer
no incineration

Between 1974 and 1987, twice as many children who lived within 5km of
incinerators in the UK died from cancer, compared to those who lived
further away, according to new research published in the International
Journal of Epidemiology.(1)

The study comes on top of others which have found significant increases
in cancers, of both adults and children, around incinerators(2) (3).
However, because incinerators are often sited in industrial or deprived
areas, scientists have been unable to say for sure that it is the toxins
from burning mixed waste that are causing these extra cancers. Other
industrial pollution or lifestyle factors, such as a poor diet, could be
to blame, they say.

But the latest study found that there was no increase in cancer around
“non-combustion” sites such as football grounds and biscuit makers. This
appears to rule out social factors such as diet. Cancers around hospital
incinerators were at similar levels to those around municipal waste
incinerators, indicating that incineration could be the common cause.
This led the author of the report, Professor George Knox of Birmingham
University, to conclude that while nearby sources of industrial
pollution might also contribute, the incinerators were “probably

The study was based on detailed examination of childhood deaths from
cancer around 72 municipal and 307 hospital waste incinerators. Most of
the incinerators studied have now been closed and those that remain are
subject to tighter controls. However, even the most modern incinerators
emit substances known to cause cancer as well as heavy metals and
ultra-fine dust particles which can have a range of other health
effects. Despite this the Government continues to insist on building new

(1) International Journal of Epidemiology, 2000; 29:391-397 (2) Elliot
P, Shaddick G, Kleinschmidt I et al Cancer incidence near municipal
solid waste incinerators in Great Britain, British Journal of Cancer
1996; 73:702-10 (3) Elliot p, Eaton N, Shaddick G, Carter R, Cancer
incidence near municipal solid waste incinerators in Great Britain. Part
2:histopathological and case-note review of primary liver cancer cases,
British Journal of Cancer 2000, 82(5), 1103-1106

State of Knowledge of the Impacts of Waste Incinerators on Human Health

Download PDF : Incinerationandhealth

CTA Letter to Legco

Download PDF : CTAlettLegcoFinancePanelPubWork

Enhanced Landfill Mining / sell our household and food waste instead of burying it


Dear Finance Panel on Public Works Subcommittee members

This reverse landfill mining could happen NOW on all our landfills and they CAN be reverse-mined using plasma gasification

Meanwhile we can SELL our daily MSW to Europe as a commodity rather than burying it since they have massive overcapacity there and need to import waste as a commodity to generate power and heat rather than using oil.

See the story at :

Kind regards,

James Middleton


Download PDF : FILE_88d8faee-d7e5-4f4a-88c7-e3fa4af1c12d(1)

Final treatment of MSW and C&I waste in Germany and neighbouring countries. How to cope with emerging over- capacities?

Download PDF : Berthoud(1)

Government scraps landfill expansion


Landfill controversy. File Photo

Tseung Kwan O residents end hunger strike over proposed landfill expansion plan. Photo: RTHK

The government has withdrawn a controversial funding application to expand the landfill in Tseung Kwan O, due to insufficient support.

The Secretary for the Environment, Wong Kam-sing, expressed disappointment while speaking at a Legislative Council public works subcommittee meeting. The committee is now discussing the government’s funding application to expand the other two landfills, located at Tuen Mun and Ta Kwu Ling.

The Tseung Kwan O plan had faced strong opposition due to its close proximity to residents.

Yesterday, several pro-government groups made clear they would vote against it.

Widespread waste charges are essential

Letters to the Editor, June 26, 2013

Wednesday, 26 June, 2013, 12:00am


Widespread waste charges are essential

Nowadays, it seems that all political parties oppose the landfill extension proposals, not just for Tseung Kwan O, but for the other districts.

The government seems stuck, partly through its own weakness, and it now faces strong opposition on environmental and other issues in society. However, discussions were more rational when former environment secretary Sarah Liao Sau-tung presented the 10-year Waste Reduction Framework Plan in 2005, where landfill extensions and incineration were included.

It received considerable acceptance from various stakeholders, as it was comprehensive, holistic approach to waste management that put the emphasis on policies that were likely to boost waste avoidance, coupled with the necessary end-of-pipe measures.

As a green group, Friends of the Earth (HK) understands the need for waste avoidance policies and waste treatment facilities to achieve holistic waste management.

But the government must act swiftly and do more in the area of waste avoidance instead of giving high-profile support for landfill extensions and incineration.

I visited Taipei City recently on a study trip focusing on waste management. There are many good practices that our government should learn from.

Taipei introduced legislation on waste charging by volume in 2000, and its government has subsidised waste recycling so that residential estates and commercial buildings can collect over 10 different types of recyclables. These subsidies are needed for recyclables with a low market value. The city authorities also employed workers to look after recycling facilities at housing estates every evening for three hours, to teach residents to dispose of various types of recyclables in collection bins.

To effectively tackle the big growth in waste in Hong Kong, the top priority should be waste charging for the whole society. Landfills are inevitable but in order to lengthen their lifespan and avoid future extensions, they should not accept waste that has not gone through certain treatment processes. If the waste is recyclable, it should be banned from landfills.

Only with these policies can we solve our critical waste problem.

Edwin Lau Che-feng, director-general affairs, Friends of the Earth (HK)

“The emissions will fully comply with the internationally most stringent, European Union emission standards for modern waste incinerators.”
I suggest Mr Blinkers Au and Legislators read these reports:

see what peer reviewed data from Spain states about living downwind of modern incinerators

Sell the MSW to Europe. It’s a commodity there. They cannot get enough for their outdated E2W plants.

No trucks needed to deliver waste

In his letter (“No denying this view of waste plan”, June 14), John Steventon stated that a long bridge would be built from South Lantau to the island of Shek Kwu Chau for thousands of refuse trucks to deliver waste to the proposed integrated waste management facility.

This is untrue. No such bridge or trucks are needed. The municipal solid waste will be compacted into enclosed containers at the existing refuse transfer stations and the containers will be transported to the facility by marine vessels in a clean and efficient manner.

At present, this waste is delivered from the refuse transfer stations on Hong Kong Island and in West Kowloon by specialised vessels to the landfill for disposal. The Environmental Protection Department has 20 years’ experience delivering containerised waste by sea efficiently without causing any littering problems or nuisance.

Mr Steventon was concerned about the smoke emissions from the waste management facility.

The emissions will fully comply with the internationally most stringent, European Union emission standards for modern waste incinerators.

Many such modern incinerators are being operated around the world. It will not cause any unacceptable environmental impacts.

We will set up an open and transparent monitoring system and provide the public with easy access to the emission monitoring data.

Elvis W. K. Au, assistant director of environmental protection