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- Environmental sustainability and climate change
- Your sustainability questions answered
- What is sustainable development?
- What is the policy framework?
- What is a sustainable community?
- Is the science conclusive?
- How do we know changes in climate are due to human activity?
- Could the Gulf Stream switch off?
- Is it oo late to prevent climate change?
- Why reduce carbon emissions here if they're rising in other countries?
- What are the key sustainability issues?
- Which tools can help councils?
- What is sustainable procurement?
- How can we procure more sustainably?
- Local, organic or fair trade?
- How should we address climate change?
- How can a council progress sustainable and renewable energy?
- What are green electricity tariffs?
- Which renewables are suitable for your own estate?
- Is nuclear energy the answer?
- What is a zero-carbon home?
- Where can I find data on emissions?
- How will my area change?
- What is a Local Climate Impacts Profile?
- Do we need an adaptation action plan?
- How can we work better with communities?
- What is sustainable waste management?
- Does recycling reduce carbon emissions?
- Is energy from waste sustainable?
- How can councils tackle congestion?
- How can a council lead by example on sustainable transport?
- How can councils in rural areas promote greener transport?
- Which alternative transport fuels are available?
- Which 'green' vehicles are available for a council to use?
Is energy from waste a sustainable option?
Energy from waste (EfW) can play a limited part in sustainable resource and waste management in an integrated strategy that prioritises waste minimisation, re-use and recycling first and foremost.
There is a danger that investing in large inflexible EfW facilities as a technical fix to divert waste from landfill can undermine efforts to prioritise minimisation and recycling. The Sustainable Development Commission applies the following criteria to EfW:
- No waste should be thermally treated unless separation of recyclables has taken place first
- EfW systems need to be evaluated on their ability to reduce overall carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions
- Schemes need to be developed in accordance with the proximity principle
- The scale and technology used should be flexible
- Planning for any EfW facility must only take place after proper engagement and consultation of local communities.
Energy from Waste in Scotland report – on the Sustainable Development Commission website