Call for more information over Mossmorran

Black smoke pours from the Mossmorran plant (Pic by Paul Irvine)
Black smoke pours from the Mossmorran plant (Pic by Paul Irvine)

The MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath has pressed the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) for more public information and to liaison with Community Councils and the Campaign Group concerned with the prolonged flaring incident at Mossmorron in June.

In a meeting with SEPA on Tuesday, Lesley Laird heard that the complex investigation is still underway and is likely to last for several months yet.

The MP stressed that the community needed reassurances about the operation of the plant, particularly in light of recent changes and assessments by a number of regulatory agencies including SEPA and the Health and Safety Executive.

Ms Laird said: “While I am disappointed that the Air Quality Report will review 2016 and not cover the most recent events, I am pleased that SEPA has committed to engage with the Community Councils and the Campaign Group.

“I cannot emphasise enough how important it is that the public can access information that is currently available and be kept informed about the progress of this investigation.

“The monitoring procedures were also discussed and I now intend to meet Professor Wilson Sibbett of St Andrews who chairs the Independent Monitoring Committee to better understand their role, and the scope of the monitoring that they currently undertake to establish, in light of recent events, if the monitoring at Mossmorran is fit for purpose.”

Rob Morris, Area Manager for SEPA, said the “very constructive meeting” was part of “the commitment we gave to provide updates on the regulatory and investigative works that we have been undertaking following the flaring that occurred at the Mossmorran complex in June”.

He added: “We agree with Lesley that it important that the public be kept informed about the progress of our investigation, and that engagement with community councils is also a priority.

“We will be issuing a newsletter shortly which will update members of the public on the progress of this work so far, and we look forward to meeting with a representative from the Mossmorran Action Group this week.

“We fully understand that many local people are concerned about the flaring that occurred at the Mossmorran complex in June, and we’d like to reassure the public that we will continue to engage with community representatives and will share what information we can when we can.”