Letter sent over composting plant

THE Environment Agency has sent a formal letter to the owners of a £3 million composting plant calling for effective action to curb smells which are the subject of complaints from local residents.

THE Environment Agency has sent a formal letter to the owners of a £3 million composting plant calling for effective action to curb smells which are the subject of complaints from local residents.

The letter requires the company, Bioganix , to comply with its waste management licence which states that smells will be confined to within the perimeter of the plant - at Parham, near Framlingham.

Residents have been complaining for several months about smells from the plant which was opened in April and composts “green” waste collected within the Suffolk Coastal and Ipswich Borough council areas.

Bioganix claims it is doing everything possible to solve the problems but the Environment Agency, which has been in talks with the company for some time, has now issued a formal letter requiring compliance with the site licence.

Chris McArthur, spokesman for the agency, said the letter had been sent as part of its enforcement policy.

“The next stage, if non-compliance continues, is the serving of an enforcement notice and we are already talking to our solicitors about this,” he said.

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Mr McArthur said the agency was seriously concerned about the situation.

Nick Helme , Bioganix managing director, said the company was spending a great deal of money and time in trying to eliminate off-site smells.

“We are making strong progress in that direction,” he said.

Mr Helme said the most pungent smell had been removed but others had consequently been revealed and were being tackled with the use of new technology.

He said the company was trying to be a good neighbour and staff had helped to clean up the mess left in the village by a recent all-night rave, even though it was not on the company's property.

Colin Hart, district and county councillor, said: “Parham residents have put up with this (the smell) for long enough. Despite a string of assurances from Bioganix that things will get better, the plant continues to emit unpleasant odours and is having a very serious effect on the quality of life of local people.

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