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A REPULSIVE smell sweeping through Dunfermline and West Fife is coming from Lochhead Landfill Site.
The Press reported in October that multiple reports from residents had been submitted to SEPA (Scottish Environment Protection Agency) over the pong that left a sickening taste in the air.
The odour can be detected from as far away as Cowdenbeath, and Fife Council are now dealing with the issue at their site, north of Dunfermline, after more complaints were reported.
Lochhead is run by the council’s arms-length company, Fife Resource Solutions (Refsol).
Robin Baird, its chief operating officer, said: “We’re continuing to do extensive work onsite to ensure we maximise the gas capture.
“These works continue at a pace and are expected to be completed in the coming weeks.”
SEPA has also confirmed to the Press that it is investigating and hope the work is completed as soon as possible.
Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Mark Ruskell is calling on more clarity from Fife Council on the issue, which is being addressed by installing gas wells to capture the gas, which will then be used to generate electricity to supply to the national grid.
Mr Ruskell said: “Landfill sites are a key source of climate change emissions so it’s important that they’re well maintained and work is undertaken to minimise their impact.
“However, in this instance, there’s been a complete lack of communication with the local community, leaving residents worried and having to tolerate deeply unpleasant smells in their own homes for months on end.
“I’ve heard reports that people thought there was a gas leak in their home or that there had been an incident at Mossmorran leading to a leak.
“People are having to chase SEPA and the council for updates, when there should have been a public information campaign about this work, easing people’s worries and confirming how long it would last for.
“I understand the work is due to come to an end shortly, which will be a great relief for residents in Dunfermline.
“However, Fife Council need to learn from this and ensure future work like this which has an impact on the local environment is clearly communicated in the press, on social media, and to neighbouring houses.”
Cowdenbeath councillor Darren Watt had also highlighted the issue and urged local people to report the issue to SEPA.
He said: “For a number of months, local residents throughout the area have complained of an unpleasant odour, often described as sulphur- or methane-like.
“I’m advised that some issues were resolved quickly, however, further work is still ongoing which includes drilling and installing gas wells and extraction systems.
“Local residents are most likely to experience this unpleasant smell generally when there’s a westerly wind, the temperature drops and a wind speed of around 8-15 mph.
“SEPA are working alongside Fife Council and site operators Refsol to ensure there’s a quick resolution, however, if you experience an unpleasant odour, you can report directly to SEPA via the website or call the pollution hotline on 0800 80 70 60.”
To report the issue, visit: www2.sepa.org.uk/EnvironmentalEvents/