Resource Spotlight

  • Plastics Exposed: How Waste Assessments and Brand Audits are Helping Philippine Cities Fight Plastic PollutionSingle-use disposable plastic is the greatest obstacle to sound waste and resource management. Inadequate waste management systems and human negligence are often cited as the main contributors to plastic waste leakage into terrestrial and marine environments—but waste and brand audit data in many parts of the world are helping reveal that the unfettered production of disposable plastic is the actual problem. As long as the mass production of throwaway plastics continues unabated, cities and countries will find it harder and harder to cope. Put simply, disposable plastic is a pollution problem, and the only way to prevent it is to stop it at source.This report compiles data from 21 waste assessments conducted in six cities and seven municipalities across the Philippines by GAIA member Mother Earth Foundation and local government project partners, with the support of GAIA and funding from the Plastic Solutions Fund. Data from these 21 waste assessments were used to extrapolate national data, including estimates about the use and disposal of different types of plastic residuals. Among the 21 sites where waste assessments were conducted, 15 sites have additional brand audit data. These data provide a snapshot of how much plastic waste, particularly those with branded packaging, are discarded by households.
  • An Industry Blowing Smoke: 10 Reasons Why Gasification, Pyrolysis & Plasma Incineration are Not “Green Solutions”Studies that have comprehensively reviewed gasification, pyrolysis and plasma in-cinerators have found that they provide little to no benefit when compared to mass burn incinerators, while being an even riskier investment.  The core impacts of all types of incinerators remain the same: they are toxic to public health, harmful to the economy, environment and climate, and undermine recycling and waste reduction programs.
  • Why we shouldn’t support Biomass ElectricityA comprehensive report which tells us everything we need to know about Biomass Electricity from the US perspective: its legal context, public health and environmental impacts, jobs and economic impacts, and various types of subsidies supporting this dirty industry.
  • Cancer mortality in the vicinity of incinerators and hazardous waste facilitiesAn academic article from Spain detected statistically significant cancer mortality in the vicinity of incinerators and hazardous waste facilities. It analyzed the risk of dying of cancer related with specific industrial activities at a national level, and highlighted the excess risk observed in the vicinity of these facilities.
  • Zero Waste is happening!Find this great achievement by one of the poorest communities in Chile. This case study shows how the municipality of la Pintana took this innovative approach in 2005 by focusing on recovery of vegetable waste. With little investment, the new system achieved great cost savings and waste reduction.