Saturday, 22 December 2012

Enfield Bowes Labour: Great victory

No MBT plant at Pinkham Way

"North London Waste Authority just announced that they are withdrawing plans for a Mechanical Biological Treatment plant at Pinkham Way.

"Your Bowes Labour Councillors, together with local residents, have been fighting NLWA’s plans for years. This is a great victory for our ward."

Your councillors: Achilleas Georgiou, Yasemin Brett and Alan Sitkin

Cllr Alan Sitkin writes:
"This is a great day for Bowes ward, London Borough of Enfield, as well as our many friends in other wards neighbouring Pinkham Way. Many many local residents and action groups have been working flat out for years to achieve this result, and it has been an honour for Bowes Labour councillors Georgiou, Brett and myself to be part of this popular effort.

"None of us are NIMBYs, and we all recognise that the good society is one that takes responsibility for waste and manages its ecologically. But as Bowes Labour has always stated loudly and clearly, Pinkham Way was always the wrong place for a waste treatment plant:
  • from an environmental perspective, it is in the middle of a densely inhabited zone; would overload an already congested road network; and would further damage local air quality (this being the particular argument that Bowes Labour stressed at the NLWP hearings in Camden), and
  • from a social justice perspective, it is deeply unfair for the citizens in or near Enfield - such as our friends and neighbours in Edmonton - to continue to be saddled with the nuisance of a huge waste treatment plant, even as the NLWA's other member boroughs get off free. Hence the argument we formulated early on that the NLWA's original site selection process was flawed, especially given how Barnet was able to make money selling a site, while shoving waste on to Pinkham Way, meaning Haringey and Enfield.
"We received a lot of stick from Enfield's Tories for this position, largely because it reveals their old administration's complicity in the original choice of Pinkham Way as a site - something that Tory political hacks were always quick to gloss over.

"We also came under pressure because, even as we always opposed Pinkham Way, we found it wrong to continue burdening Edmonton's more deprived neighbourhoods with further waste volumes - a deep social injustice that Enfield's Tories found perfectly acceptable. Pinkham Way was not only an ecological battle - it was a moral one as well.

"To repeat, we are not NIMBYs, and we sincerely recognise the need for all of us to pay much closer attention that we have in the past to why waste is accumulating at such an alarming rate, and how unfair it is for some people to live near dumps filled with waste generated by other people.

"We will continue to fight this battle. We do this in part through our ongoing efforts to:
  • increase possibilities for recycling (with collection rates shooting up in Enfield in the two years since Labour took over)
  • pressure food manufacturers to right-size packaging and take greater responsibility for items' end-of-life disposal, and
  • promote market gardening and other more local agribusiness regeneration initiatives, that will not only reduce our collective food miles but also generate local jobs.
"The battle carries on, and we have many more challenges to face. But today was a great, great day for Bowes ward, our neighbours and friends, and everyone who has selflessly fought to achieve this result.

"By working together and avoiding stupid political divisiveness, we will have many more such days in the future. And we will make our corner of North London clean, human and sustainable. For all of us."
Cllr Alan Sitkin (Lab)
Bowes ward
Chair, Sustainability scrutiny panel, London Borough of Enfield

No comments:

Post a Comment