The Waste Incineration BREF covers a variety of activities including the burning of untreated and pretreated municipal waste, hazardous waste and sewage sludge incineration.
The main environmental impacts of waste incineration are linked to air pollution: the flue gases resulting from the combustion of waste contain particulate matter, heavy metals, dioxins and furans, sulphur dioxide, hydrochloric acid and other harmful pollutants.
Incineration has already been regulated for decades. It is one of the industries for which Emission Limit Values (ELVs) have been set at EU level. Yet the unavoidable release of the most harmful pollutants, even in low quantities in state-of-the-art installations, continues to raise significant environmental and health concerns. The release of substances including various dioxins and toxic heavy metals is proven to be linked to respiratory diseases, cancers, immune system damage and reproductive and developmental problems.
The operation of waste incineration/co-incineration plants also triggers negative impacts on water quality due to the discharge of heavy metals and other harmful substances to surface waters, as well as in cases of mismanagement of the produced residues.
Because of their intrinsic properties, certain pollutants pose long term environmental damage due to bio-accumulation, persistency and toxicity; hence any pollution load of these PBTs/POPs should be prevented. Toxic emissions are particularly harmful to the most vulnerable in society, including children and unborn babies.
The EEB seeks to ensure the strongest possible standards in the interests of human health and environmental protection. T
For more information and background, please see our more detailed [WI BREF Briefing]. You can read about how you can contribute to our work below.
Considering recent experience in BREF reviews, we would seek to get the following information: