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Jackie Whitelaw (NCE 12 September) refers to incinerators not being popular.

The reason for this is that in the past incinerators burnt rubbish at low temperatures with all the associated problems of emissions.

We should abandon the term incinerator and refer to pyrolysis plants that do a better job. The method is to heat waste in the absence of oxygen at 500infinityC, which in turn is used to burn residue from the retorts at a very high temperature - about 1300infinityC.

The resultant ash is clean and free of toxins. The thermal energy produced is converted to power.

I have estimated that in my own area a pyrolysis plant could save nearly £2M a year in avoiding landfill tax and transport to landfill, and make a profit from thermal recycling.

Large pyrolysis plants at major conurbations could provide great benefits by thermal recycling producing power and district heating.

Perhaps when they have been established we could see the 'mining' of landfill sites as a source of fuel for these plants.

HD Osborn, (M) 15 Cowal View, Gourock PA19 1EX, Renfrewshire.

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