The Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) Asia Pacific responded to the completion of the 55th Annual Meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) by claiming that the bank’s climate plan is riddled with false solutions.
“The ambition of the Bank to finance the requirements of meeting 1.5C goal risks create more inequities as we see continued support for false solutions with the same industrial polluters that pushed us to this climate crisis,” GAIA Asia Pacific Climate and Clean Energy Campaigner Yobel Putra said.
According to GAIA Asia Pacific, approximately USD 1 billion in loans, grants, and technical assistance total have been distributed in the region for Waste-to-Energy (WTE) incinerators between 2009 and 2021, said a press release on Friday.
“That’s a lot of money that could have been better spent supporting measures for preventing unsustainable production, waste collection and segregation, recycling, and redesign for saving more natural resources which could drastically reduce our carbon footprints,” Putra said.
The WTE industry is being supported as a solution to waste, energy, and ocean health. This, according to GAIA Asia Pacific, hampers the region’s efforts to come out of the crisis stronger and greener.
Global evidence on WTE incinerators shows that the technology is costly and dirty leading to plant closures but leaving behind permanent problems such as the trail of bad debts, long-term health implications for communities, ecosystem damage, loss of jobs for waste pickers and recyclers, and 68 per cent more greenhouse gases per unit of energy than coal plants.
GAIA Asia Pacific calls for the ADB to cease in categorizing WTE incinerators as climate-mitigating, enhancing ocean health, and environmental sustainability. The flawed tagging direct policies, international efforts, and public finance in support of a polluting industry.