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OIL giant ExxonMobil has promised that unplanned flaring at Mossmorran in Fife has now stopped.
It follows two nights of disruption at the ethylene plant, with the sky turned orange, and visible from Edinburgh.
More than 380 people have now complained to the Scottish Environment Protection Agency.
The Forth Bridges tonight with the flare from Mossmorran giving this often captured scene an apocalyptic feel. pic.twitter.com/xqh3Mr39AG
— Simon Douglas (@sjedouglas) October 5, 2020
Neale Hanvey, the local MP, said “the appalling noise, light, and vibrations coming out of Mossmorran” was keeping his constituents awake.
Plant manager Jacob McAlister apologised for the fault. He said: “We will finalise our own investigation into the root cause but can confirm that, contrary to misinformation, weather was not a contributing factor.
“We absolutely understand and apologise for the frustration that the use of our flare can cause.
“We will, therefore, continue to work to reduce future occurrences.”
Sepa said on Monday it was investigating whether there had been a breach of permit conditions.
Nights are fair drawing in so we should really thank Mossmorran for the extra hours of daylight. pic.twitter.com/MvEnaQe0Kz
— Craig Smith (@Smicht) October 5, 2020
They have already referred ExxonMobil to the Procurator Fiscal over flaring last year.
Hanvey said: “I’ve tried to be as fair and balanced as possible, but patience is understandably wearing thin. I share the frustrations of the 380 people who submitted complaints to SEPA, and the many more who are sick of unplanned flaring at the site.
“The folk at SEPA tell me it’s going to take time to unpick the reasons for this flaring incident. That’s because Exxon is giving minimal information about what is happening at the site. This is not good enough.
“I want my constituency to benefit from a well-functioning site that protects high-value jobs, but it’s increasingly hard to make that argument when we have such regular flaring and little information coming out about the reasons why.
“The community needs answers. I suggest to the folk at Exxon that it’s in their interests to give them.”
Scottish Tory MSP for Mid-Scotland and Fife, Liz Smith, tweeted: “Tonight’s Mossmorran flare is one of the worst ever. Utterly unacceptable that the residents should have to put up with this ongoing saga night after night.”
— Tom Duffin Photographer (weePhotos) (@weePhotosEdin) October 5, 2020