Recently, China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF) has received reports from people in many places, reflecting the problems of landfill sites. Including the issue of falsification of data involved more public engagement link that has been more questioned. The problem of neighboring garbage dump has become increasingly prominent.
In the past few years, waste landfills and waste incineration plants often have various neighboring movements. About 20 years ago, I wrote a CPPCC proposal for the Beijing Liulitun Landfill Site and was commended for the excellent proposal of the CPPCC National Committee. Finally, this waste incineration plant project was stopped and cancelled indefinitely.
But this is not a single direction issue. Later, more and more experts and leaders of relevant departments told me: “Then where do you say that the landfill can be placed? Now, especially in the east, where the population density is high, it is difficult to find a place to put the garbage. And the current garbage output is increasing rapidly, how to deal with the problem of landfill and garbage disposal?”
I think the first aspect is whether the local government is serious about reducing the amount of garbage. We know that many places have such ideas. Some companies operating waste incineration have to promote some of their own businesses and the development of different interest groups. In fact, this field is promising. To solve the dilemma of the garbage dump, the first thing we should do is to reduce the amount of garbage.
From excessive packaging, extending the life of the product, to recycling, and finally to garbage sorting. In addition, I once specifically talked about the principles and levels of recycling of waste materials, reducing most of the garbage. If the local government does not work hard on this, we think that the local government should review and correct the problems with regard to the difficulties of waste, the problem of landfills, and the problem of incineration plants, so that this work should be done properly.
After these tasks are in place, we will talk about landfills, waste incineration plants, and neighborhood avoidance campaigns. We have contacted many whistleblowers, and probably they have several important concerns and demands.
The first point is public participation. What they are talking about is the insufficiency of public participation, and the commissioning of evaluation companies to falsify the content of public participation. We have done some investigations and this situation is common. Therefore, among the public who have not been informed, have not participated, and have not fully expressed their opinions, they will naturally have larger opinions. Therefore, we suggest that this level of work should be adequate.
Second, it is the third party of the worker. Now our mechanism is generally the project party entrusting the evaluation party. Of course, the party who paid the money hopes that there is no problem in the evaluation, so many people do not trust a large number of such evaluation units. Distrust caused them to worry about the project next to their home. In fact, we know that some projects are okay, but the worry caused by mistrust is very serious.
What’s the third question? Operating companies, such as incineration plants, their environmental facilities, and their exhaust gas treatment. Many volunteers said to me: “Do they know how to operate them? Can they operate them?” “If it runs, will it follow the assessment?” The infrastructure of the landfill, the anti-seepage underneath, aeration, and long-term monitoring in the later stage are all contents of great concern to the public.
The fourth issue is that the people are more concerned about the monitoring of the long-term environmental impact of these construction projects. Such monitoring from the perspective of public environmental benefits is not enough. After the project is completed, public participation is not enough, so they are very worried
Everyone understands that with the development of society and the increase in population, especially in the later stages of modern industrial civilization, leading to the explosion of the amount of garbage. This is a problem that we cannot avoid.
There must always be a place for garbage to be placed. We hope that relevant departments and enterprises, as well as the relevant public, can come together to have a scientific, open, transparent, fair, and approved evaluation of the entire project.
There is still no way to avoid the problem of garbage dumps. We should work hard together to do this well.
(This article is based on the Secretary-General of CBCGDF Dr. Zhou Jinfeng’s dictation and has not been verified by him.)
(Video credit: CBCGDF)