It is disappointing to see inaccuracy rather than enthusiastic support for the European Commission's proposed directive concerning organic waste ("Why old teabags have no place in the European dustbin", 26 January).

"Dangerous" methane is the main component of natural gas piped to most homes. It is produced by anaerobic decomposition of organic waste, as well as by cows and termites. Yes, it is a greenhouse gas, but converting organic waste into methane in a controlled way means an additional source of fuel. It is collected already from municipal waste tips and used to generate power. I am sorry if Sir Leon Brittan is opposed to it, and that, apparently without having seen a copy, "the Government dislikes the proposed directive", yet plans to compost 1 million tonnes of organic waste by the year 2000! How will those plans be implemented without collection of organic waste?

The separation of household waste has been successfully practised in the Netherlands and Germany for many years.

Brian Whitehouse

Bowdon, Cheshire