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For immediate release: September 25, 2003


Dismissal of Zero Waste a LIE

Cork Harbour Area for a Safe Environment (CHASE) condemns Minister Cullens proposal to fast track Waste Management Proposals to Bord Pleanala, and rejects claims that a ‘Zero Waste’ Strategy is not realistic.

CHASE Chairperson, Sean Cronin, said “Minister Cullens outrageous fast tracking proposal is antidemocratic, anti community responsibility.  He either believes in community participation, or he doesn’t and this measure would indicate strongly that he doesn’t. 

Minister Cullen is on a steep learning curve, and clearly does not understand the concept of ‘Zero Waste’.  However, it is an outright lie to say that it is entirely consistent with current Government policy.  Incineration combined with recycling cannot work as a part of the transition to Zero Waste.  Incineration is an expensive and polluting technology, requiring guaranteed large amounts of waste to pay back huge financial investments.  This commits us to at least 25-30 years of incinerators, with all the negative health and environmental consequences.

The dismissal of Zero Waste as idealistic is another lie when Zero Waste is already a reality and is being adopted globally, even as closely as the UK, where the Bath and North East Somerset Council has been the first UK local authority to aim for Zero Waste.

A ‘Zero Waste’ Plan for the UK published in March 2002 by Robin Murray for Greenpeace, could easily be adopted for use for Ireland.  The study even details government policies and finance needed to make Zero Waste a reality.  Zero Waste is completely achievable, and even large companies with difficult waste streams are adopting Zero Waste Policies*”

Why can the Irish Government not accept that safe, sustainable methods, which work in other countries, will work in Ireland too?  What is responsible for the Irish Governments continued insistence on medieval solutions i.e. burying or burning our household rubbish?  The Government has a duty to provide 21st century alternatives must be to solve a modern waste problem. 

* Toyota is aiming for zero waste by 2003. Other major companies including Honda, Du Pont, Hewlett Packard and NEC have began the process of adopting zero waste targets

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For further information contact:

Linda FitzPatrick, CHASE PRO

Tel:      021 4374506  (will divert to mobile)

Sean Cronin, Chairperson, CHASE 

Tel:      087 6777358

CHASE - Cork Harbour Alliance for a Safe Environment, 1 Lower Midleton Street, Cobh, Cork
Tel: 021 481 5564
- Email: info@chaseireland.org