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UK Transforming urban waste into sustainable material and energy usage

Transforming urban waste into sustainable material and energy usage: The case of Greater Manchester. Original Research Article
Journal of Cleaner Production, Available online 13 December 2012, Pages
Elvira Uyarra, Sally Gee

“… the paper describes how Greater Manchester (UK) underwent a transformation from a relatively simple landfill model to a highly complex, multi-technology waste solution based on intensive recycling and composting, and sustainable energy usage. The case is relevant because the UK has long been seen as a laggard when it comes to sustainable waste practices. The 1999 EU landfill directive exerted great pressure to change waste practices in the UK. Against the national trend of incineration with energy recovery, Greater Manchester opted instead for a solution that was deemed more innovative and sustainable, but which involved overcoming significant technological, political and financial challenges. The paper investigates the process that led to this purposive transformation, characterized by a mix of political vision, stakeholder engagement, economies of scale, and the ability of waste disposal managers to gather expertise, resources, political influence and commitment at multiple levels of governance.”

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