Please reconsider your comments about recycling and incineration in the Jan. 5 Viewpoint, “What the new year can bring, with help.” Here are my suggested changes:
Recycling efforts must be promoted. Americans have become too comfortable in their habit of throwing away used items. All landfills need to be stopped and closed. The full garbage stream needs to be handled. Industry, sometimes intentionally, has encouraged wastefulness. Spot recycling, like source reduction and reuse, should be part of an active effort to avoid waste.
Safe waste-to-energy incineration, or “thermal recycling,” should be a major part of the solution. Taking plastics out of the garbage stream is taking out the fuel to thermally recycle the full waste stream. It is better than we do with cars, where the fuel is spent just once. The industry should support a national thermal recycling bill, and legislate a ban of landfills and dumping.
Also the industry should support an energy tax and a gasoline and fuels tax of $4-$5 per gallon, with the tax money going to mass transit and thermal recycling facilities and infrastructures.
William A. Diecks