As part of a series of projects planned to support and elevate grassroots efforts against trash incinerators in the U.S., GAIA released a factsheet on failing incinerators, featuring five key locations.

  • Commerce Refuse-to-Waste Facility (CREF) in Commerce, California
  • Hennepin Energy Resource Center (HERC) in Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Wheelabrator Baltimore (BRESCO) in Baltimore, Maryland
  • Southeast Resource Recovery in Long Beach, California
  • Detroit Renewable Power in Detroit, Michigan

The factsheet highlights failures that aging incinerators have been facing in recent years and how communities have raised their voices against these facilities through strong organizing, with a focus on environmental justice aspects. Although the case studies are only a fraction of 77 incinerators operating throughout the country, each facility’s extreme air emission records, accidents, other health- and safety- related concerns and financial issues clearly showcase how trash incinerators are causing harm to the communities and the environment. Pointing out the need to phase out incineration, the factsheet also presents zero waste alternatives with strategies and policy tools along with existing toolkits and case studies.

We thank our local partners who have provided great insight and information from the beginning. We hope that this resource will help cities move forward to a just, safe, toxic-free circular economy by phasing out trash incineration and adopting a zero waste philosophy!