Monday, March 08, 2010

Dr Paul Connett talks Environmental Crime in Rugby

PROFESSOR PAUL CONNETT VISITS RUGBY to find out what all the fuss is about. It doesn't take
long - as the Cemex co-incinerator hits you in the eye!

ILLEGAL and RETROSPECTIVE PERMITS/PERMISSIONS are all there in black and white and continue to be frequently granted by Warwickshire County Council and the so-called "Environment" Agency. Look at the WCC web site and follow the history on the mineral planning site, and in the Regulatory Committee papers. The names of those involved locally in this great environmental disaster are all revealed, and while the Agency obscures its participants, the names of the "partners in crime" can all be found at the Agency office near Lichfield.

ENVIRONMENT AGENCY CONSULTATION now begins into MAKING PERMITS AS LAX AS POSSIBLE by setting the non binding ONLY-GUIDANCE "new national standard for cement plants co-incinerating waste" - with as many "get out" clauses as they can muster! The first thing they want to do is to REMOVE MOST MONITORING/SAMPLING - so that should help no end to AVOID any possible "enforcement action." Then they will allow many more hours without any ELV (emission limit values) so that should help even more. The Rugby Permit has now an additional 8 hours without ELVs after the 200 tonnes an hour raw meal feed that counts as a "start up" - because the plant may be unstable for a few hours after start-up , so cannot meet the standards. Although they said waste would not be burned at start up it is now permitted for an extra 8 hours allowing PICs (products of incomplete combustion) to rain down. All they have to do to avoid any sanctions is to say "we were just starting up - or just shutting down" and thus the Agency can do nothing. There is no control at all for much of the time - as the ELVs are not in place. No one is allowed to know what hours the plant is started, nor how many hours a day/week it is running without any ELVs at all.

Oh what a surprise - the ten year old state-of-the-art plant is now found not to be BAT (Best Available Technology) after all, despite all the Agency has claimed about it, both in the courts and to the public and Rugby Community Cement Forum since 2000! "Once this national position is established we will begin to review the IPPC PERMIT at Rugby to see how far the plant is there from the new standard." And then we will give them many more derogations and exemptions to let them get away with it as usual?!

Cemex refuse month after month to discuss the gas flow rate. They say "we do not know what it is" - so obviously they do not know what the pollution is either? As emissions continue to increase year on year the Agency and Cemex both try to hide the reason for this increase. EITHER they are increasing the pollutants in each cubic metre - which goes against the IPPC requirement to PREVENT and where not possible to MINIMISE - OR they are increasing the number of cubic metres of gas flow per second - because of the INCREASED production and the INCREASED waste burning and increased SUBSTITUTION. Now they are on over 100% substitution - i.e they are burning about/over double the tonnage of wastes than they were of coal i.e 1,000 tonnes a day of waste instead of about 450 tonnes a day of coal in the calciner. The kiln (about 240 tpd coal) is not affected as they cannot burn waste in that. All along the Agency said no-one is allowed to look at the TOTAL hourly/daily emission rate of pollutants as they wish to reserve the right to increase and increase the pollution in Rugby. The gas flow rate for sampling and monitoring requirements as set in the 2003 IPPC permit BL7248 (Schedule 3 page 2 of 6). Now the Agency wants only "gas flow, as measured, or otherwise determined to relate concentrations to mass release." Meanwhile the increases in pollutants affect the long term GLC and much more affect the short term GLC in Rugby.

For many years the EA and Rugby Cement argued that the new plant did not need bag filters as these were not BAT for this type of semi-wet huge-steam plume plant and would CLOG UP and would not work and would increase emissions, plume visibility, and cause the plume to fall locally and to ground more. The ESP was working as well as it possibly could and was at a very low level of emissions. Bag Filters were not only unnecessary but also they were a non-starter! Suddenly in 2005, after all the FALSEHOODS that had been told about the plant being BAT, particulate was running at 41.5 NM3 well over the BAT limit, so they NEEDED to rush through bag filters (only only 50-60% of the plant!) to meet the standards of the 2005 WASTE INCINERATOR DIRECTIVE for the cement plant that had by stealth morphed into a CO-INCINERATOR! There was no consultation in Rugby or at the Council, and they pushed it through - see WCC Regulatory Committee and Mineral Planning Permissions 22 December 2005. The GAS FLOW RATE in the application was said to be 84.6 NM3. (page 14).

TELEMETRY ESSENTIAL AND INFRA RED CAMERAS for public to know what is happening there! We need them reported live to web and fitted on the main stack and on the other most polluting low level sources such as the cement mills, and on the kiln bypass ESP, where the highly chlorinated polluted gases from the waste burning are diverted away from the calciner, to "bypass the kiln" and its "bag filters", and out into the air via the existing ESP - permitting many more toxic emissions into the air, and on to us. Last night the plume was disgusting, lofting and visibly falling in big chunks for miles across the town centre and hallowed Rugby Close!

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