Hygienism and the health benefits of incinerating household waste: From the birth of incineration to the dioxin crisis (1890s-1990s) [Lincinération des déchets, bienfait sanitaire ? De lère hygiéniste à la crise de la dioxine (années 1890-1990)]
Frioux S.,University of Lyon |
Roussel I.,Association Pour la Prevention de la Pollution Atmospherique 10
Environnement, Risques et Sante | Year: 2012
The hygienist conception of waste disposal as a task entrusted to the supervision of municipal engineers progressed throughout the first three quarters of the 20th century. Society has changed during this period, and waste has both increased and diversified, threatening the traditional methods of waste disposal by farmers and landfills. Progressively, following the pioneering British example, France accepted incineration as the most hygienic method for killing pathogenic bacteria and preventing fermentation. These plants allowed the progressive closing of landfills that were surrounded by new urban neighborhoods. The case of Besançon shows the long and hesitant waltz between landfill and incineration. Proponents of agricultural utilization of garbage launched polemics. Nonetheless, when legislation to regulate industrial smoke emission was enacted in France in 1932, incineration seems to present no problem. Only after the renewal of facilities, in the 1970s that doubts about some of the nuisances induced by waste burning started to enter the minds of French citizens.