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Huge gas flaring which could be seen from Edinburgh caused alarm last night as controversial Mossmorran petrochemical plant in Fife was restarted.
Many locals took to social media to complain about the flaring which has previously caused light and noise pollution, vibration to houses and disturbed sleep to residents.
The plant was shut down last year following persistent flaring episodes and the flare was being used as part of the restart work.
In a statement, environmental agency SEPA said: “Sepa is aware of fluctuations in the elevated flare at Mossmorran as part of the final stage of the facility restart and specialist officers continue to monitor.
“We’re working hard to address the root causes of ‘unacceptable flaring’, making flaring an exception rather than routine.
“The short and medium-term investment we’re requiring the operators to make, from noise reducing flare tips in 2020 and 2021 and planning, designing then delivering new ground flare capacity will make a real difference to local communities.”
Plant operators ExxonMobil said: “Our team are working to reduce both the size and duration of the flare.
“We apologise for any concern we may have caused for local communities during the use of the flare earlier this evening.”
The flaring ceased at around midnight,