Questions posed over Markinch biomass emissions

Tullis Russell Biomas Plant
Tullis Russell Biomas Plant

Concerned residents in Markinch met with representatives of the new biomass plant to discuss the issue of emissions at the facility.

Around 30 people attended the public meeting to hear a presentation by Ian Gaunt, plant manager, at the RWE run biomass instillation.

The plant burns 1500 tonnes of biomass fuel per day, 90 per cent of which is waste wood which contains contaminants.

Lorna Ross of the Markinch Environmental Action Group said issues had been addressed at the meeting but a number of others, including light and noise pollution, have yet to be answered.

“We still feel there are serious concerns over the amount of pollution created from contaminants that need to be addressed, as well as more effective and sensible continuous monitoring of emissions that could be put in place, rather than the six month sampling that will eventually be in place when the plant is fully operational,” she added.

Following the meeting, Mr Gaunt told the Gazette: “In addition to helping to safeguard several hundred jobs, the plant will have substantial environmental benefits.

“The project will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 250,000 tonnes per annum, with a resultant benefit to the local community, while also helping to make a major contribution to Scotland’s renewable targets.

“My team is an important part of this community. We’ve spent time speaking with the community to explain how the plant will be operated.

“An important part of these processes are mitigating plant noise and lighting levels, while also minimising airborne emissions through the application of state of the art boiler controls, and monitoring in strict accordance with legislation enforced by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency.”

An in-depth report into the concerns over emissions will appear in the next week’s Gazette.