Infographic: Zero Waste Strategies Towards Carbon Neutrality

  Materials management holds great potential in climate mitigation. This infographic guides cities through three zero waste strategies to move toward global climate goals: reducing emissions at the source, stopping incinerators and methane emissions from landfills and...

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Fact Sheet: Plastic and Incineration

We have too much plastic that has nowhere to go... Can we just burn it? Short answer: no! Burning is the most harmful way to handle plastic waste. It turns one form of pollution into others, including air emissions, toxic ash, and wastewater.

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Waste-to-Energy has no place in Africa

For centuries, self-sufficient agricultural societies had been zero waste by nature. This sustainable cycle broke when artificial materials,  such as plastic packaging, began conquering the market. As the world's fastest-urbanizing continent, Africa has...

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Incinerators in trouble

's 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,...

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Facts about “Waste-to-Energy” Incinerators

Incinerators are facilities that treat waste by burning it. They come under many names such as “mass burn incinerators,” “thermal treatment facilities,” or so-called “waste-to-energy” (WTE) plants, and involve processes such as combustion, pyrolysis, gasification, or...

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Gasification, Pyrolysis, Plasma Arc: False Solutions to Plastic Pollution

Our network’s experiences in countries around the world have shown that incineration, gasification, pyrolysis, and plasma arc are at best a distraction from real solutions, and at worst a source of serious climate and toxic pollution. As part of the Break Free From Plastics movement, we know that this isn’t just about managing the problem. It’s about preventing it in the first place.

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GAIA pub shows how waste incinerators undermine recycling

Waste incineration undermines recycling. This conflict is particularly clear in so-called “waste-to-energy” incinerators, and is also true for burners that do not recover energy. The cases presented in this briefing paper clearly illustrate the many ways that incineration has worked against waste prevention and recycling in various locations around the globe.

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Facts Rule Out Trash Gasification

Since WW II attempts to gasify municipal solid waste (MSW) have failed repeatedly. Processing trash with high heat is (1) polluting; (2) expensive; (3) energy inefficient; (4) destroys resources that could be reused, recycled, or composted; and (5) generates slag and other “by-products” that have to be landfilled.

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The Green Climate Fund and community control

The Green Climate Fund is a new, global institution which is supposed to channel billions of dollars to support climate adaptation and mitigation in developing countries. But it is critically important that communities retain control of which projects get funded.

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Carbon Trade Watch: Cap and Trade Factsheet

The goal of the system is to help polluters meet “reduction” targets in the cheapest way possible. But what is cheap in the short-term does not translate to an environmentally effective or socially just outcome over the long-term, and the system is
wide open to gaming by industry and traders.

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Respect for Recyclers: Protecting the Climate through Zero Waste

Reducing, reusing, and recycling municipal waste is one of the easiest and most effective means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It also provides gainful employment to millions of people in the developing world, mostly in the informal sector (“wastepickers”). Yet rather than supporting these efforts, climate funds such as the Clean Development Mechanism are subsidizing incinerators and landfill gas systems, which compete directly with recycling and increase emissions, unemployment, and public costs. A new, non-market, climate finance mechanism is needed to support the formalization and expansion of the informal recycling sector.

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