Burning Trash & Trees in Charlotte a Bad Idea

Recently, it was brought to our attention that ReVenture has proposed a mega-incinerator to burn trash and organic waste in Mecklenberg County and the City of Charlotte. The NC Central Piedmont Chapter of the Sierra Club is leading the charge against it and needs your help.

Currently Mecklenburg County and the cities of Charlotte, Davidson, Cornelius, Huntersville, Matthews, Mint Hill and Pineville are considering a plan which would lead to over half a million tons of garbage and recyclable yard waste being incinerated every year. This would be a major step backwards in our waste management policy by moving from a landfill to a “sky fill”. Additionally, there are 25 schools or day cares within four miles of the proposed site.

You can learn more about the efforts to stop it and how you can get involved at the Central Piedmont Chapter of the Sierra Club here.

Incinerators do not make waste disappear
For every five truckloads of waste burned, four truckloads are pumped into the atmosphere and one remains as toxic ash, which still must be carefully stored or land filled.

Incinerators are a toxic technology
Even the most technologically advanced waste incinerators produce hundreds of distinct hazardous byproducts including dioxins, heavy metals, halogenated organic compounds and the newly discovered threat, nanoparticles. These occur both in toxic air emissions and in ash residuals.

Incinerators contribute to global warming
Incinerators produce more global warming pollution (mainly carbon dioxide) per unit electricity generated than most other kinds of power including coal, gas and hydroelectric.

Incinerators waste energy and natural resources
Incineration irreversibly destroys valuable materials and necessitates the extraction, refinement and assembly of more raw natural resources to produce new products. Alternatives such as recycling, reuse and repair and composting conserve energy by efficiently using materials. This significantly reduces global warming pollution, toxic waste and ecological degradation.

Incinerators trap communities in a cycle of debt
They also displace more affordable and economically productive waste and energy solutions. Alternatives to incineration such as recycling, repair, reuse and composting create ten times more jobs (green jobs) and small business opportunities that benefit local communities.

Disadvantaged communities are disproportionately burdened
These communities are more vulnerable to being targeted as sites for new incinerators. Incinerators reduce property values in near by neighborhoods.

What Can I Do?
Tell your friends, neighbors and colleagues about the issue and the facts
Call, email, post on Facebook, Twitter and help to spread the word.
Write your local officials – mayor, council members/commissioners and others
Tell them why you oppose the waste policy change and an incinerator in Mecklenburg County. Ask for a public hearing.

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