Biffa Whiff: Public Health England publishes ‘interim advice’

Public Health England has published its interim assessment of potential health risks from the gases from the Redhill landfill site.

They conclude that the levels of hydrogen sulphide and volatile organic compounds shown by the monitoring are “unlikely to pose an appreciable risk to nearby residents short or long term health”.

They also acknowledge that “Odours can cause nuisance amongst the population possibly leading to stress and anxiety. Some people may experience symptoms such as nausea, headaches or dizziness, as a reaction to odours even when the substances that cause those smells are themselves not harmful to health.

They conclude, “PHE recommends that all measures are taken to reduce the off-site odours from the landfill site, as it is acknowledged that odours can affect an individual’s wellbeing.”

Read the Public Health England report here

Environment Agency “satisfied with progress”

Meanwhile, the smell continues.

We are continuing to ask Biffa and the Environment Agency for updates and for a quicker resolution to the problem.

Biffa is updating the Environment Agency daily, and proving a weekly summary and projection of the following week’s works.

John Radclyffe, that Pollution Prevention and Control Officer for this area, says, “We are satisfied that progress is being made and compliance with the requirements of our Enforcement Notice and Compliance Assessment reports is currently being achieved.”

Capping Cell 6 – will it do the trick?

The ongoing works include an additional membrane being placed over Cell 5 and the temporary capping of cell 6. At the liaison meeting on 12 March, Biffa’s Waste Recovery Managing Director, Mick Davis, said, “The temporary lining of cell 6… should have an effect on the odour.” Let’s hope it does so.

The Environment Agency hope that their Air Quality Monitoring Station will be deployed at Watercolour in the first week of May, and will remain in place for at least four months.

Read more:

Environment Agency cuts

The Environment Agency does vital work to regulate polluting processes and prosecute offenders and helps to keep us and our environment safe.  Yet it is facing budget cuts, which will lead to around 1,500 jobs being lost. This can only diminish its ability to work effectively.

Cutting the Environment Agency’s budget is a false economy. The cost of dealing with pollution incidents is much greater than preventing them.

David Blaydon MP has tabled an Early Day Motion (a kind of petition for MPs) asking the Government to put a moratorium on the cuts to the Environment Agency.  I have written to Crispin Blunt, MP for Reigate, asking him to sign it. If you wish to do the same, it is Early Day Motion 947

See the Early Day Motion



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