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EXXONMOBIL said the flaring at their Mossmorran plant today (Monday) is due to “essential plant maintenance”.
The firm tweeted yesterday that there was a need to burn off excess gas at the Fife Ethylene Plant.
In a community announcement plant manager Martin Burrell said they needed to make “the planned use of our elevated flare for a period” during the daytime.
He added: “We do not anticipate that this will be a high volume flare, so we are confident it will cause little community disruption.
“The planned use of the flare is required to undertake a scheduled inspection of one of our production pipelines.
“This work also forms part of our HSE (Health and Safety Executive) inspection regime.
“To give our team safe access, we first need to clear any residual ethylene gas from the pipe, with the safest way to send it to our flare.
“We have provided our detailed plan to Sepa.
“This process is completely planned and safe, and we will work hard to minimise any potential disturbance.”
Over the past few years, local communities, politicians and environmental campaigners have expressed concerns about repeated unplanned flaring incidents at Mossmorran, which includes the Fife NGL Plant run by Shell.
Both companies were served with final warnings by environment watchdog Sepa in 2018.
ExxonMobil are spending £140 million on plant improvements and said an enclosed ground flare – due to become operational this year – will reduce “elevated flaring by at least 98 per cent”.