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Environment Agency act on Clarences fire and dust dangers

Action to protect residents in Port Clarence and the surrounding area after major two major environmental incidents has been promised by the Environment Agency.

In a letter to Stockton North Labour MP Alex Cunningham, the agency confirmed they are monitoring the activities at both the Jigsaw Wood Recycling site and the Roadstone Aggregate complex and requiring improvements to avoid a repeat of the problems earlier this year.

After hearing first hand some of the concerns of local residents regarding the environmental impacts arising from the sites at a public meeting hosted by local head teacher, Jean Orridge, Alex wrote to the Environment Agency demanding action to protect the community from dust clouds which cover their homes and washing and dangerous smoke – the last fire burned for several days raising anxieties in the community.

The Agency confirmed that whilst there were no prosecutions planned following the fire which was caused by arsonists and the dust cloud, they were working with both companies to ensure the necessary changes are made to protect the community.

Roadstone Aggregates are now having dust suppression equipment installed and the Agency plans to set up dust monitoring facilities.  The Environment Agency will continue to work alongside both companies to ensure this progress continues, whilst Alex hopes to meet with Roadstone managers soon to re-emphasise the need for proper community protection measures to be taken.

Alex said:

“I am pleased that the Environment Agency has listened to the concerns of residents and that the companies concerned are taking the necessary actions to minimise the impact that they have locally.”

“I am confident that, with Stockton Borough Council continuing to monitor air quality and the Environment Agency committing to work with both companies to minimise detrimental effects, the interests of local people are being prioritised.”