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"A rush to build incinerators to burn waste and break the UK's reliance on landfill is threatening the country's commitment to increase its recycling rates.
"As new figures reveal that recycling rates have fallen for the first time in 30 years, experts warn that the UK is in danger of building far more incineration capacity than it needs. The controversial waste disposal systems are used to produce electricity and heat for homes and industry. But there are fears that the 'march of the incinerators', as some have called it, will act as a disincentive for councils to recycle waste.
"... Experts said the use of incinerators had consequences for recycling as local authorities were forced to divert waste to feed the plants. Adam Baddeley, principal consultant at Eunomia, said"
"The choice to invest in thermal treatment can hold back recycling efforts, At one level, the money invested in such plant simply isn't available to put into building recycling plants or collection infrastructure.
And once you've built an incinerator or gasifier, there's a strong incentive to keep it fed with waste, even if that means keeping on collecting as 'black bag' rubbish, material that would be economically practicable to collect separately for recycling."