GB No. 5-6, summer-fall 1991
The problem what to do with our waste is growing in the Netherlands. Where the waste scandals in the past were closely connected with chemical waste now the problem is also enlarged with domestic waste.
One of the provinces in the Netherlands, Zuid Holland (PROAV), is not able to find solutions in the province to dump their own waste. Each province in the Netherlands has his own waste program, and to "export" waste in the Netherlands to another province is due to bureaucratic rules an expensive operation. Cheaper according to the waste company of the bigger cities The Hague and Leiden, to Poland. We know now that there had been negotiations with the district Koszalin in Poland. As "act of gratitude" the PROAV said they want to help the building of an hospital in this district. The amount of waste about which was negotiated was: 2 mln tons. Thusfar it is not clear if the negotiations were with the authorities of Koszalin or with some private organizations.
As soon as environmental organizations, also Milieukontakt, and also the Green Party in the Netherlands, heard the rumour of the negotiations we immediately started to react. We are for a few reasons furious about the eventual export of waste. At first it is unclear if the dumping or incineration of waste in other countries will be carried out in an responsible way. Another more important fact is that we think that we, in the Netherlands or even in the province Zuid Holland, are responsible for our own dirt. And the third is that we are already for years waiting for a good waste management plan from the government. Thusfar only half grown measures have been taken to reduce our own waste "production". The eventual export abroad strenghten us only in the conviction that measures must be taken very quickly.
The Netherlands is too small for our waste!!!
The PROAV made clear last week, 6.6.91, that due to lack of social basis for their plans they draw back their plans. This is a victory for us. But only a small. In the same statement they said that the draw back is only for the time-being. And that the option of sending the waste to Koszalin can become actual maybe in the future.
Milieukontakt will closely follow the developments and ask everybody to inform us when there are again rumours of waste export to Poland!
For information and reactions,
Ton van Eck
(project Poland for Milieukontakt)
NL-1001 ZB Amsterdam
tel: + 31 20 6392716
fax: + 31 20 6391379
E-mail: GreenNet: mkontakt