Health Impacts from Municipal Waste Management

Potential Health Impacts from Municipal Waste Management

The scientific specialists in the Council's Environmental Protection Team have produced an in-depth review (DOC, 1.4MB) of the potential health effects of the various technologies used for dealing with municipal solid waste. Such technologies include composting, incineration, landfilling, mechanical-biological treatment.

The review surveys the concepts used by scientists in reaching their conclusions about health and environmental impacts and summarises and assesses the available evidence concerning the potential health and environmental impacts of waste treatment techniques that might be used in Milton Keynes. Although the review deals with very complex scientific and technical concepts it has been written in such a way that it is accessible and understandable by any interested citizen of Milton Keynes. In addition to the full 165 page review report there are two summaries, a brief summary and an extended summary which are simplified versions of the main report.

The review is based on three areas where questions have arisen about possible health and environmental impacts from dealing with our waste:

Part A: Introduction to Impacts, Milton Keynes & Waste

What impacts might there be on health and the environment from dealing with Municipal Solid Waste?

Part B: Concepts, Emissions and Control

How do scientists reach their conclusions about potential health and environmental impacts? Is there a universal scientific consensus about these impacts?

Part C: Potential Health and Environmental Effects and Impacts

How concerned should we citizens of Milton Keynes be about the potential health and environmental effects of dealing with the waste that we produce?

This review was produced in order to provide the people of Milton Keynes with an unbiased assessment of the latest scientific information about potential health effects from the various technologies available for dealing with municipal solid waste.

The main document (DOC, 1.4MB) is 165 pages long.

There are two summaries available as separate documents:

3,500 word brief summary (PDF, 145KB) and

12,500 word extended summary (PDF, 265KB).

There is also an independent external peer review of the Council's document, written by Dr Mark McCarthy, Professor of Public Health, University College London, who is an internationally acknowledged expert in this field.

Report on the document ‘A Review of the Potential Health and Environmental Impacts from Municipal Waste Management Technologies which might be used in Milton Keynes’ (PDF, 133KB).

In addition to an objective review of the Milton Keynes Council document, Professor McCarthy's review provides some very interesting insights into the complex field of assessing potential health and environmental impacts.

If you have any comments or queries to make about the review please contact the Environmental Protection Team.


Last Updated: 30 November 2017