The people of Levenmouth have spoken and the message to Scottish Water is crystal clear: “We all smell a stink from the sewage plant.”
An independent survey of households and businesses completed last month revealed a whopping 87 per cent of residents were aware of the notorious ‘Methil Ming’
Furthermore, 90 per cent of 315 people surveyed believed the smell originated from Levenmouth Waste Water Treatment Works.
The survey was gathered by Taylor McKenzie Research and Marketing Ltd after a sharp spike in complaints from the public last year.
And the findings have spurred Scottish Water to speak more to the community as it develops an action plan to eliminate the odours.
Anne Marie Dewar, regional communities manager said: “Scottish Water will be writing to all residents and businesses with the first of a regular newsletter aimed at keeping the community engaged with what work is taking place.
“We have also launched a dedicated online resource at www.scottishwater.co.uk/levenmouth where local residents and businesses can find out more information about the steps Scottish Water and CELTS, the site operator, are taking as part of the action plan. Also available are documentation such as minutes of stakeholder meetings and presentations.
“Our commitment is to ensure these measures substantially reduce odours which we acknowledge have had an impact on local residents and businesses, for which we apologise.”
Work starts early next week to upgrade the plant’s sludge driers and Scottish Water is looking at the option of raising the height of the chimney stack at a future date.
While MP Lindsay Roy and MSP David Torrance acknowledged Scottish Water’s determination to tackle the problem, local campaigners were less forgiving.
A spokesperson from Friends of Levenmouth Action group (FLAG) said:“Finally, after more than 12 years of public grievances - which have fallen on deaf ears - Scottish Water has decided to put its hands up and admit it’s been to blame for the nuisance that’s the Methil Ming.
“Not good enough for the residents who have had to bear the brunt of this awful smell, year after year - and not forgetting the infamous title the area now has, thanks to the stink from a tawdry waste water treatment works.”
“They have pledged, repeatedly, to work with the community and now propose to ‘communicate more’ The fact remains Scottish Water has been negligent and the true number of complaints made about the nuisance odour were kept from public knowledge. Why? Because Scottish Water didn’t and still don’t want to spend money to resolve the problem.”