April 2nd, 2014

Bad data, inaccurate reporting and dubious certificates

5 minute read

by the Administrator


The sun glints on a bale of cans in a MRF yard; hares frolick amongst fresh-faced daffodils atop a reclaimed landfill; the golden dawn is greeted by the easy laughter of a collection crew…. Such signs can only mean one thing: spring has arrived in the world of Isonomia. While you couldn’t begrudge the team a break to enjoy a gentle stroll in the warming air, we’ve been as busy as ever throughout the month of March, making sure that the Land of Blog has been every bit as blossom laden as the trees. So, what has been putting a spring in our step this month past?

The 18th day of the month saw Isonomia history being made with more readers than ever before in a single day descending upon us. They came to read about Peter Jones’s epic quest for truth via the channels of the Press Complaints Commission – and many of them stayed to look around. Peter has been fighting to have a number of negative — and untrue — claims made by the Daily Mail in their coverage of recycling issues retracted, and after a lengthy battle this month he emerged victorious. Now that he is guaranteed a place in Waste Valhalla, Peter might not care for such trifles as most read article of the month, but nevertheless we can offer up to him this token of gratitude.

Also well on the way to becoming a legendary figure in the annals of blog is Amir Dakkak, who despite publishing his piece on Egypt’s water crisis last October seems permanently wedged near the top of our leader board and occupied second place on our “most read” list last month.

As the weather began to warm this month so did the pages of Isonomia, as incineration proved to be the month’s hot topic with no less than three articles covering different aspects of the much debated thermal treatment option. Dominic Hogg invited us to get fiscal in a Budget day article that considered the case for introducing an incineration tax in the UK in context of environmental fiscal reform. Authors of Eunomia’s Residual Waste Infrastructure Review Adam Baddeley and Chris Cullen meanwhile stopped to consider Sita’s recent claim that poor C&I data is the major barrier to residual treatment plant investment in the UK, and found that a number of other factors are at play. Lastly, Ann Ballinger gave her expert commentary on Defra’s recent change of tack on the relative environmental merits of landfill versus incineration, and explained why incineration can in fact be worse for the environment that landfill.

We were happy to welcome not one, not two, but three debutant authors this month. Phil Conran did us the honour of writing our 200th blog post, prompting controversy by asking whether the PRN is still up to the job of stimulating recycling markets.Matthew Brander raised concerns over the use of renewable energy certificates in greenhouse gas accounting for electricity consumption, identifying the potential for an accounting disaster of Enron-like proportions. And our partnership with Middle Eastern and North African website EcoMENA has blessed us with another new author, Michelle Rose Rubio, who took a look at the environmental dangers of polystyrene, the current lack of recycling facilities for this material, and some possible solutions for the future.

Thanks to all those who commented on our articles; it’s something we and our authors really appreciate. Offering a platform for a variety of opinions and generating debate is what we’re all about, so if anything you’ve read here has flown your flue or grated your grate, please do let us know through our comments section or even with an article of your own. We try to provide an informed but accessible viewpoint on a wide range of environment issues, so whether it’s collection trucks or life cycles that are on your mind, please do get in touch.

It’s easy to shift from visitor to commentator to author, and we’re always glad to hear from you. Whether you’re from Boston or Bolton, Los Angeles or Long Ashton, with your help we will create a space where thoughts on topics from across the environment sector can be expressed and explored, enabling communication and cross fertilisation of ideas.

Now that nature is all abloom, what can you expect to spring up in the pages of Isonomia this April? New author Sarah Ettlinger has been thinking about food certification schemes, and after reading this year’s recently published Ethical Consumer Report is sure to have something to say. Multiple blog record holder and father Thomas Vergunst has again turned his attention to the topic of nappies — but will his new piece be able to equal the success of his last? And we hope to bring you news from Nigeria via our relationship with EcoMENA.

Isonomia is more than just a blog these days –we’re hooked up to all sorts of other outlets. You can now follow us by subscribing to our Paper.Li site, where you can see Isonomia’s articles, and other interesting material, gathered together in a newspaper format. We also post our articles via our Facebook page, and tweet about each new piece. Of course at the top right of each page you can still subscribe to have each article e-mailed to you. It couldn’t be easier to follow all we have to offer.


The Admin


The Typing Pool


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