3rd Line Test Scheduled for 28/04/21

Following the widely reported incident that occurred during the testing of the 2nd Line at the Incinerator on 15/04/21 (see previous post)- Covanta’s contractor HZI (Hitachi Zosen Inova) has announced that it will be testing the 3rd Line on 28/04/21.

BACI attended the 3 monthly CLP (Community Liaison Panel) last night and had the opportunity to question both HZI and the EA officer that attended the incident on 15/04/21 to learn more.**

HZI had originally scheduled the 3rd Line test on 20/04/21 – but the test was postponed until discharge/odour mitigation measures could be put in place.

HZI stated that the incident occurred during the heating of the 2nd boiler line. Once heated to certain temperatures the binder within the insulation evaporates and some odour is produced. HZI went on to state that the odour is not usually to the extent that was reported by residents on 15/04/21.

BACI questioned HZI why they thought that the odour was so much more on this occasion. They gave an account of what they believed to be the reason. Due to various timings occurring differently that usual – the insulation/binder had been drying out naturally and was drier than usual for this stage and the boiler test. Due to the somewhat dryness of the insulation/binder – HZI heated the line to a higher temperature quicker and for a shorter period of time – resulting in increased evaporation of the binder.

The EA officer stated that she had not completed her report on the incident but mitigation measures are now in place to prevent the discharge affecting residents.

BACI asked if the EA will be in attendance for the test 28/04/21 and she did not seem to think it was necessary now the measures are in place.

BACI asked the EA to confirm HZI’s statement that the odour/discharge was “not harmful to people or the environment”. The EA officer declined to confirm this.

The EA had declined to answer any health based questions in previous meetings – citing PHE (Public Health England) as the authority on health issues. The CLP members have been asking for several meetings for a representative from PHE to attend. The EA feedback on this matter was that PHE do not have the resources to attend such meetings and have other priorities.

A representative from Central Beds was also present at the meeting – and stated that following the numerous complaints to the Environmental Health Department it has been agreed that incidents should not be reported to them and only to the EA.

Should residents experience any Covanta related issues during the test on 28/04/21 and/or any other day – please report it to the EA incident hotline on 0800 807060 and then also record the incident with BACI using the form HERE

HZI’s announcement letter can be viewed HERE

** The official CLP meeting notes are not available until up to 4 weeks after the meeting and are not agreed until the next meeting in 3 months time. The notes above are not verbatim – and are from the representatives recollection only in order to feedback to BACI members/residents. We look forward to the notes of the discussion in full by the independent facilitator as part of the Community Liaison Panel’s Zoom meeting. Unfortunately – CLP members are prohibited from recording the event.

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