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Environment Minister’s Comments on Waste Incineration Attacked

Comments by Minister of the Environment Jan-Erik Enestam on the incineration of biological waste have been sharply criticised by Finnish environmentalists. In a recent newspaper interview, Enestam said that incineration was preferable to composting.

The Finnish League for Nature Conservation on Sunday urged Enestam to learn more about composting and waste management legislation. The group said that the output of modern compost facilities is quite suitable for soil improvement and farming.

The League says that Enestam's comments are from a time when compost waste was spoiled by adding sludge from sewage treatment plants, with a high heavy metal content. The group notes that this is no longer the case.

The League also noted that waste management legislation states that the first priority should be in prevention of waste, while recycling is a secondary consideration.

The party secretary of the Green League, Ari Heikkinen, also reiterated his party's opposition to the burning of biowaste.

In an interview published in Saturday's Aamulehti and Turun Sanomat, Enestam favoured incineration, saying that farmers tend to shun compost soil.

Sources: Finnish News Agency

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