Since the last site update in April, there have been 11 complaints during Q2 2020 (as of 28/06/2020). These were received via the Environment Agency. All complaints were attributed to odour being emitted from the site, with 1 out of the 11 odour complaints including the mentioning of birds but not specifically about birds.
All complaints have been thoroughly investigated in accordance with Neales Waste Management/Quercia’s procedures.
As part of the company’s investigations, we continue to utilise the on-site weather station which is serviced and calibrated by an external company.
Due to various factors, the complaints were considered not to have emanated from the site and the results of all investigations have been reported to the EA in the line with our procedures.
Regular inspections for odour, birds etc. at the site boundaries are still being undertaken by the company. Typically, these are carried out by a member of staff undertaking the daily environmental monitoring activities to ensure compliance with Government guidance on Covid -19 controls including social distancing etc
It has been noted over the past 14 months that, during off-site inspections, odours which are not related to the site are regularly detected in areas of Spring Meadow / Higher Meadow. It has been verbally confirmed by EA officers that this odour is not related to the site. It has also been previously confirmed, both verbally and in writing by the EA, that Landfill Type Gas odours have been detected in the area which are not related to the site.
Daily checks continue to be made for landfill gas odour, particularly around the full extent of the temporary capped area and site’s deep well locations.
Monthly waste inputs have reduced since March 2020. On average, inputs are approx. 900 -1000 tonnes per week. This is due to the UK Government lockdown measures to manage the Coronavirus epidemic which has closed many businesses. The company will continue to decline opportunities of additional potentially odorous waste inputs due to the potential of these wastes producing odours which could have an impact off site.
Techniques for dispersing scavenging birds; bird kite, scarecrows, audible distress calls (fitted to landfill machines) and gas cannon are being utilised to prevent on site issues. We continue to use less aggressive dispersal methods to reduce the number of scavenging birds moving towards the local population. This will be continued to be monitored to ensure this has a positive impact.
The odour suppression unit continues to run during site operational hours as a minimum.
The capping of cell 3B/C, which started in July 2019 and suspended in November due to the poor weather experienced throughout the summer and autumn months is currently being completed and will include the placement of restoration soils. The work recommenced in early June and we are using a small team from an experienced local company to undertake this work under full Construction Quality Assurance (CQA) standards and controls by Terraconsult – our technical consultants. The use of a local company allows for effective social distancing etc both travelling to and working on site. In addition, the staff are able to return to their homes at the end of the working day. The laying of the liner was completed on 26 June and the placement of restoration soils will follow.
The works do not require any excavations into previously tipped areas of the site and we do not expect any issues which could impact local residents.
While the country remains under movement and operating restrictions it is difficult to confirm likely dates for other planned landfill activities at this time but it is proposed to start to construct a further tipping cell in the southern part of the site during July 2020.
Improvements continue to be made to the site, its operations and system procedures to ensure the Company’s obligations under its permits and planning permissions are met.
We would be grateful if you would contact the Company in the first instance should you wish to report an issue or complaint on 01257 273311. However, if you prefer to contact the Environment Agency please do so on 0800 80 70 60.
Under normal circumstances the company would welcome residents to visit the site and would be happy to escort residents around the site so they can see the site, the progression and improvements which have been made. However, due to government advice in relation to COVID-19, all non-essential visitors to site are being asked to refrain from attending site.
In relation to site operations and COVID-19, the company wishes to assure all residents that operations are being carried out as normal. Operatives are continuing to work on the landfill, while complying with UK Government social distancing and hygiene guidance, to ensure that site is managed in line with company procedures and practices. The company has systems in place to ensure that critical operations can continue as planned.