To seek more sustainable methods of dealing with surplus materials ("waste") in Hertfordshire.
We are working to persuade the local authorities in the county to introduce more sustainable ways of reducing, reusing and recycling surplus materials locally, at each main town in the county. This would take us towards a 'circular economy' in which we would no longer dispose of huge quantities of waste through incineration and landfilling. The Hertfordshire Waste Partnership is dong a great deal already towards that but need a more 'joined up' approach to saving to invest by the councils.
We are an information 'hub' founded in March 2009 among networks of community groups and individuals.
We gather and share useful information with all interested parties, including the County Council, the districts & boroughs, UK Without Incineration Network (UKWIN), local campaigning groups, campaigns elsewhere, environmental groups, companies, political parties, industry specialists and so on. The environmental groups include Transition Towns & Villages etc. and the local Friends of the Earth groups.
We rely on waste industry experts and experiences elsewhere to indicate the best ways of avoiding and dealing with waste as far as possible without disposal (landfilling and incineration).
Our eventual aim is to avoid the generation of waste in the first place. Meanwhile there is plenty of scope for more of our "residual" waste to be diverted into use, re-use, recycling etc. This would be in the direction of a 'circular economy' in which the County Council would have very little 'waste' materials of any kind to dispose of. As a next interim step, we urge that no new incinerator capacity be planned for Hertfordshire - especially not on an inflexible long term contract! - and that the Herts. Waste Partnership's activities be translated into local processing facilities for composting, mechanical biological treatment, anaerobic digestion etc. close to each conurbation.
Around 85% of the waste in your bin can be recycled. Yet in Hertfordshire we only recycle around 50%. We need to increase recycling facilities, to make it easier for you to recycle more. We also need to employ forward-looking technologies such as anaerobic digestion, which cost less to set up and operate, reduce consumption, re-use resources, create local jobs and reduce climate change impacts. This would allow us to reduce and eventually eliminate any waste which cannot be re-used or recycled.
For the latest information please see our Blog page.
At key meetings, the Council has decided in principle to go ahead with Veolia's Revised Project Plan: Cabinet Panel on 4th March, Cabinet on 14th March and Council of 22nd March.
The outcome was clearly a 'done deal' commercially, economically and politically; so the meeting was a formality, even though much mention was made of the emails that we and other community groups had submitted. You can see some key inputs via our Library page.
Next, we are preparing an updated 'model' (diagram) of what the Council should be doing with its waste arisings, as a basis for contesting their choice of mass incineration of residual waste..