Photo: Slide from Paul Conett's talk earlier this year
Anyway nearly £2 billion of private finance initiative (PFI) funding is currently allocated to planned large waste infrastructure projects - a subject I've referred to before. These projects would also require huge amounts of money from council tax payers for decades to come. As Friends of the Earth point out the majority of PFI waste projects are incinerators, which:
- contribute to climate change.
- destroy precious recyclable materials.
- create far fewer jobs than recycling.
- represent very poor value for money for tax payers.
At the moment England dumps and burns over £650 million of valuable resources each year. FoE research shows that if material currently being landfilled or incinerated was recycled instead, it would:
- save money.
- slash emissions equivalent to 6 million cars.
- reduce the need to import materials from abroad.
- create tens of thousands of new UK jobs.
The Government must stop wasting public money on incineration. Send the campaign letter from here.
18th July 2010
Neil Carmichael’s claim that the public-spending disaster facing the country is the result of Labour’s mismanagement (Stroud Life, 14th July, p. 4) is disengenuous at best. I could bore your readers silly with the vast array of data that indicates without the possibility of argument that the massive increase in the size of the deficit results from the banking collapse, but would be grateful if you would publish just this single graph (attached) of public-sector net borrowing between February 2007 and December 2008. It clearly identifies the point at which borrowing started to increase massively: the autumn of 2008, following the collapse of the global banking system.
The gap between money in and money out of government coffers arose from three principal causes. First, the hundreds of billions (it is hard to reach a precise figure) that were given to the banks to stop them becoming bankrupt. Second, lost tax revenue because the banking crisis rapidly wreaked havoc on the businesses that make up the our national economy. And third, the money the government spent to protect the real economy –and all our livelihoods. I have many, many criticisms of New Labour’s 13 years in power, but to seek to pretend that they were responsible for this cyclical capitalist collapse is deeply misguided.
The seriousness of the economic situation facing the country takes us beyond the realm of petty party-political point-scoring. Mr Carmichael’s column indicates that either he does not understand the current position, in which case he is not qualified to represent us at Westminster, or he is deliberately seeking to mislead, in which case he is not morally competent to do so.
Yours faithfully, Molly Scott Cato, Green Party Economics Speaker