General Purposes Chair Admits Further Problems With Incinerator
Cllr Steve Sims said there were raised levels of carbon monoxide and volatile organic chemicals, mainly caused by burning old, wet waste on the site.
Last year it emerged that the incinerator had repeatedly breached emission levels for a number of substances including dioxins, which the World Health Organisation warns can damage health.
At the time, the Council said the amount of released dioxins would be unlikely to cause harm and changes to the way waste was burned had brought these under control.
During the winter months, when less waste is being produced, it has been normal to incinerate some of the backlog from the stockpile adjacent to the incinerator.
But this hasn’t reached the correct temperature while being burned to completely destroy the controlled chemicals.
Steve says burning the old waste shouldn’t have happened and he’s taking the issue seriously.
He also says it’s clear that the current equipment is old and isn’t up to the job.
But he says the health risk to local residents is negligible and there’s probably more dangerous chemicals coming off people’s coal fires at this time of year.
He added that with the legacy waste being shipped off soon, the problem should be resolved.
Director of Place Craig Dryden says the incinerator is now shut down for its annual maintenance until February 2014.
No decision has been made on whether the incinerator will be replaced, as yet.