With the completion of the 1st turbine at Little Raith Wind Farm next to the Fife Ethylene Plant, a stark reality has hit home, especially for residents at the top of the town, and in all the surrounding communities overlooking Mossmorran and the Wind Farm.

There is now a future of uncertainty for residents. Already residents have witnessed a very detrimental visual impact, and with known concerns and negative impacts from industrial wind turbines, there is going to be at least 25 years of potential problems for some residents at the top of the town, and so far, any concerns raised have not been addressed by those with the power to do so.

On top of the range of problems that are associated with wind farms, there is also the concerns that the majority of the town has had to deal with from the Fife Ethylene Plant, the health impacts, the environmental impacts, noise & light pollution, excessive vibrations and flaring.

As far as we are aware, apart from random monitoring of local air quality by SEPA, the only permanent Air Quality Monitoring stations are located in Dunfermline, Rosyth, Kirkcaldy and Cupar, with the data viewable at: www.scottishairquality.co.uk. Surely there should be permanent Air Quality monitoring stations located in the communities most impacted from the Fife Ethylene Plant?

Air Quality Monitoring

We are deeply concerned that wind turbines around the Mossmorran complex may increase benzene (a known carcinogen) and other pollutants in higher concentrations in the local area, as identified in the research conducted by the University of Glasgow, putting the health of the surrounding communities at even greater risk.

Currently, one wind farm developer has to temporarily monitor Benzene & air pollutant levels, but this monitoring will only provide small reassurance and limited protections for the duration of the required monitoring. Mossmorran pollutant dispersal and flaring events do not happen on a constant basis, therefore, any benzene & air pollutant monitoring program on a temporary basis is useless, and only provides limited reassurances to the local communities affected, for the duration dates that the monitoring is taking place.

We, the undersigned, request that Air Quality monitoring stations are built in Lochgelly, Lumphinnans, Cowdenbeath and Auchtertool, to monitor Benzene & pollution levels from the Mossmorran plant for the lifetime of any wind turbines built around the Mossmorran complex. When all wind turbines are decommissioned, the monitoring stations should be left in place, until the Mossmorran complex is decommissioned. The placement of the monitoring stations, should be decided by the local communities, through extensive consultations with the public by the local authority or the Scottish Government.

All data collected by the monitoring stations should be made publicly available, online and offline, to allow individuals and other interested parties, to examine and monitor the situation on an ongoing basis.

This will help to clearly quantify the risks associated with inappropriate turbine placement next to industrial sites that disperse pollutants, and help provide reassurance that (a) the Benzene & pollutant risk is being taken seriously by the local authority and (b) the risk of benzene & pollutant poisoning is clearly quantified, openly and transparently.

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Both of these developments carry their own negative impacts, and to put both developments in the same area has the potential to increase those negative impacts, as was identified in the University of Glasgow research published in 1999, which concluded;

…The velocity deficit downwind of the wind turbine influences the rate at which the plume propagates downwind, and results in an increase in the concentration of plume material (which may include pollutant gas and particulates) around the wind turbine…….environmental protection agencies are justified in their concerns regarding the placement of wind turbines near to industrial plants, and strongly suggests that the interaction between wind turbines and gas plumes should be investigated further in order to quantify clearly the risks associated with future strategies regarding the use of land near to industrial sites.

We have been raising the issue of Benzene for almost a year at the Community Council, and there is some Community Councillors who are very concerned, but since they are in a voting minority, the issue has not been addressed.

We have also been raising the concern in local papers, yet we have been met by a wall of silence and overall the concerns have not been addressed.

We are aware that some groups and representatives may be working in the background, yet without disclosure into the public domain, communities are left feeling that they have no representation or reassurances regarding their concerns.

The communities surrounding these developments deserve answers, we all deserve to have our fears and concerns listened to, and have those concerns addressed publicly.

The Lochgelly Community Council is legally recognised by the local authority, and the Scottish Government as representatives of the Lochgelly Community. They have a mandate in Scottish Law to represent us, so we need them to start representing us now, along with other various authority bodies.

The Lochgelly Community Council will be holding a public meeting at the Royal Oak Community Club on the 12th September at 7pm, please come along, raise your concerns and seek representation from our Community Councillors. If you cannot attend, but would like your issues raised, please leave a comment below, or contact us and we will raise the concerns on your behalf.

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One Comment

  1. Concerned

    September 9, 2012 at 9:37 am

    Are wind farms saving or killing us? A provocative investigation claims thousands of people are falling sick because they live near them:-
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-2199284/Wind-farms-Are-wind-farms-saving-killing-A-provocative-investigation-claims-thousands-people-falling-sick-live-near-them.html

    Interesting read!

    Reply

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