Issues at Mossmorran have sparked further alarm for Central Fife communities after the plant unexpectedly began to flare again, dispersing a large cloud of black smoke and pollutants.
Mossmorran emitted a large cloud of black smoke sometime after 7pm on Sunday evening, causing alarm to residents in the Central Fife area, who took to social media to express their concern.
Residents had been recovering from the onslaught of flaring, noise, light and vibration since early Monday morning. The only information provided to residents from ExxonMobil was that the plant was suffering from a “process upset”.
Early reports about the current flaring incident indicate that firefighters have responded but no final reports as to the nature, cause or expected duration of the incident have been issued.
The black smoke is an indication that hydrocarbons have not been fully combusted, and the emission is likely to contain volatile organic compounds which are known to exacerbate asthma and other respiratory problems. Other emissions may include the hydrocarbons benzene and toluene which are known to be carcinogenic.
Images captured by residents
Residents have informed us that they have been in touch with local councillors after the recent flaring events. No responses have been forthcoming.
Councillor Rosemary Liewald posted a public statement from ExxonMobil on the 14th June on her official Facebook page. A resident responded asking for information on who to contact with their concerns, which the councillor ignored. There is no indication that any local councillor is actively pursuing this issue despite the exceptional nature of these emergency flaring events and the widespread concern that is being expressed on social media.
Lochgelly and Cowdenbeath Community Councils have completely blanked the issue, even though they will (presumably) have received press releases from ExxonMobil.
Meanwhile there have been reports from residents alleging that they have been able to smell the burning, and in one case a strong smell of gas.
Photo/Video Credits & Copyright: Craig Fairhurst, Keith Annandale, Kevin Payne, Johnny Schiavone, Gary McDonald, John Rowley, Paul Irvine, Dave Connor, ChucklesLeVert, Peter Allan