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Extracting is a possibility

By North Devon Journal  |  Posted: November 08, 2012

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WITH reference to the leaching of rubbish at Northam and the potential problem of large quantities being washed out to sea, I wonder if the possibility of extracting and recycling the waste in the tip by "landfill mining" has been discussed ('Trying to stop tides of rubbish', Journal, November 1).

I gather this already happens in Belgium and Germany and is being seriously considered generally as the scarcity and hence prices of certain metals increase.

Plastic is also a valuable resource, particularly for the oil which can be produced from it, while organic matter can be composted and methane can be used for heating or fuel for vehicles.

Waste could be separated for recycling at the site or transported to a materials-handling facility.

Obviously there could be problems with toxic material, dealing with the dangers of gas, impact on the environment etc but shouldn't the idea of extracting waste be discussed with commercial waste companies to establish whether the idea is a realistic proposition?

P Hames,

Bideford.

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