Neighborhood pollution concerns about the Stanlow oil refinery
Nick has recently received mail from a concerned constituent regarding the emissions from the Stanlow oil refinery in Ellesmere Port.
One person wrote in asking for advice from their MEPs because they have tried repeatedly to contact the refinery directly to have some questions answered, but they have just been deflected. Residents in this area are concerned about the constant emissions from the refinery which have a major effect on the air quality in Elton, Ince and Thornton le moors.
There are unanswered questions about the possible health risks present to people living in the above locations. One person living in the area for several years has never witnessed any type of air quality testing being undertaken at ground level where the smoke gathers.
This person would like public a health awareness leaflets distributed to the local residents which explains in detail any possible health risks as a result of their emissions, along with any precautionary actions the public should take in the event of particularly heavy emissions output as the refinery operates in a highly populated area.
The aim of this person’s letter is to find a way to provide the residents living near the refinery with the information they need to protect their and their family’s health.
Nick Griffin, MEP’s Outreach officer replied with the following:
Thank you for your email regarding emissions from the Stanlow oil refinery in Ellesmere Port. The Citizens Advice Bureau reports that if you have a complaint about pollution from large industrial processes such as Stanlow oil refinery that you should contact the Environment Agency.
The Environment Agency is the main government agency in England and Wales responsible for protecting and improving the environment. It does this by, for example, regulating industry, maintaining flood defences and water resources, and improving wildlife habitats. You can contact the Environment Agency National Customer Contact Centre by telephone on 0370 850 6506; by email to: email@example.com; or by post to: Environment Agency, National Customer Contact Centre, PO Box 544, Rotherham, S60 1BY.
Local authorities in the UK have statutory duties for managing local air quality under Part IV of the Environment Act 1995. They are required to carry out regular reviews and assessments of air quality in their area against standards and objectives prescribed in regulations for the purpose of local air quality management (LAQM) before undertaking Action Planning if air quality is found to breach the regulations.
So I would also suggest contacting your local council to establish what air quality assessments they have undertaken in the area.
Following this the next step therefore may be to contact the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). Defra provides support for local authorities to help them meet their requirements under the Environment Act 1995, so may be able to liaise with the local council, on your behalf. You can contact the Defra Customer Contact Unit by telephone on 08459 33 55 770; by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org ; or by post to: Defra, Nobel House, 17 Smith Square, London SW1P 3JR.
If you contact Defra in writing, please address your letter to The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Natural Environment, Water and Rural Affairs, Richard Benyan MP, who is the Minister responsible for air quality. Defra has a 15 working day target to reply to written correspondence.
I hope that the above information is of some help to you in obtaining a satisfactory outcome to your request.