Recycling may be burnt in waste incinerator if no deal Brexit happens

4th September 2019 | Recycling

Recycling such as plastic and paper may be burnt in Gloucestershire’s waste incinerator if Britain leaves the European Union without a deal, a district leader had said. Officers at Cotswold District Council said a no deal Brexit could mean recyclable material from the district ends up being incinerated at the Javelin Park facility, the authority’s lead Joe Harris has warned.

According to Mr Harris, the district council has outlined that in a no deal Brexit scenario, there is a chance that the authority will be unable to dispose of recyclable material into mainland Europe, meaning it has to be stored somewhere of disposed of by burning the waste or sending to landfill. District councils such as the Cotswolds are responsible for waste collection while county councils including Gloucestershire manages waste disposal.

Mr Harris told the Local Democracy Reporting Service he is seeking clarity from Gloucestershire County Council about whether he would have to send the recyclable waste to the rubbish burner in the event of a no deal. He added he cannot make a commitment until he receives assurances from the county council.


Gloucestershire County Council said in a statement Javelin Park “has only ever been sized to deal with Gloucestershire’s waste that can’t be recycled.” Britain is scheduled to leave the EU on October 31, but MPs are due to vote on a bill today which would mean Boris Johnson would have to seek a deadline extension if a deal had not been agreed with the EU.

The £633 million incinerator, by junction 12 of the M5, has been burning the county’s residual waste since July. The county council has previously said the incinerator will provide electricity to power the equivalent of 25,000 homes, reduce carbon emissions compared to landfill and save taxpayers £100 million. Mr Harris said he was “shocked” by the advice that recycling could be burnt rather than reused.

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