Pollution update, plus death of oaks in Ancient Woodland

DIGESTATE SPILL UPDATE;

Last week the Environment Agency gave this report regarding the 23rd July pollution incident;

'Environment Agency staff continue to focus on ensuring that the operator, Crouchland Biogas Limited, completes cleaning up the liquid waste that’s been polluting the local environment. The clean-up is almost complete. The dam at the lowest end of the affected stream continues to prevent polluted water moving further downstream. The operator’s contractor is monitoring water quality in the stream and will not remove the dam until it is certain that doing so will not cause further pollution downstream. There are also still small pockets of pollution upstream of the dam that require cleaning up.
A member of the community kindly reported further potential pollution of the same stream on Sunday 26 July. We have investigated this report and concluded that it was caused by existing pollution in the stream being washed downstream by the weekend’s heavy rainfall. The impact was minor as the polluted water was intercepted by the dam at the lowest end of the stretch of the affected stream.
Our investigation is continuing and details of this will be limited until all the facts of the case are completely understood.
Please feel free to share this update with the wider community.

We would continue to urge anyone to report incidents of pollution to our 24 hour hotline on 0800 807060. '

  • Since this update above, the water in the neighbouring landowner's stream has tested high for ammonia, indicating further contamination which needs to be cleared. 

DAMAGE TO ANCIENT WOODLAND

  • It has become very clear that the digestate spill has adversely affected the trees in the Ancient Woodland adjacent to the biogas plant, some of which are now dying.
  • Mature oaks around the lagoon adjacent to the digesters are also showing signs of severe stress. The photo directly below shows the dying oaks near the biogas plant. The photo further down shows where the digestate poured out of the top lagoon destroying vegetation and travelling at least 1.5km across fields, Ancient Woodland and into streams.
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