14 June 2012

(S4O-01137) Seafield Waste Water Treatment Works

Malcolm Chisholm (Edinburgh Northern and Leith) (Lab): 9. To ask the Scottish Government how many complaints were made about the Seafield waste water treatment works in the monitoring year following completion of the odour improvement plan. (S4O-01137)

The Minister for Environment and Climate Change (Stewart Stevenson): In the monitoring year that ended on 1 June 2012, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency received one complaint, Scottish Water received 21 complaints and City of Edinburgh Council received 243 complaints. Many complaints related to a specific incident in March, in relation to which remedial measures have been put in place.

Malcolm Chisholm: Given the large number of complaints, despite the fact that option A in the odour improvement plan was supposed to take more than 90 per cent of the local community out of the odour zone, and given the particular failure of option A to deal with peaks of solid effluent coming into the plant, does the Government accept that further investment will be required, and is it ready to take account of that in future financial allocations to Scottish Water?

Stewart Stevenson: Scottish Water has been receiving some £110 million each year, which is a substantial investment. The most recent odour problems have been caused by a winter that was substantially drier than normal, which led to a build-up. A specific issue to do with incorrect storage of sludge in contravention of the site’s odour management plan has been addressed.

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