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Update issued after complaints of ‘rancid smelling air’ from Johnstown landfill site – petition gains pace asking for ‘cleaner air’

It has been announced that a “number of improvements have been identified to minimise the odour” at the landfill site in Johnstown, that has been subject to ongoing complaints about the bad smell emanating from it.

This afternoon Councillor David A Bithell, who represents Johnstown as well as being the Lead Member for Place – Environment & Transport on Wrexham Council, issued an update of ‘actions’ following several issues raised to him prior to Christmas, and “on-going complaints regarding the Landfill Site in Ruabon/Johnstown”.

Cllr Bithell said, “I have raised concerns and arranged for a meeting with National Resources Wales (the regulating body). I have also raised concerns locally with Senior Officers at Wrexham Council and have arranged for Environment, Planning and Public Protection Officers to be present. The meeting is arranged for early February when I will ensure local concerns are discussed.

“I am aware of an Action Plan that the site operator, ‘Enovert’ have developed to tackle many of the concerns, these include; improvements to the leachate preventions, new and improved gas extraction infrastructure, amendments and improvements to the capping layers and new fencing to help reduce wide blown litter from the site.

“Hopefully this work will improve the situation for residents in Johnstown and the surrounding communities. I do encourage residents to report issues via the number provided below.”

Industry Regulation Team Leader for Natural Resources Wales said: “Following complaints of an odour from local residents, our officers have been working with Hafod Landfill in Johnstown near Wrexham.

“The site operates under an environmental permit that we regulate, and contains conditions that the operator must comply with, in order to minimise the impact of their activities on the environment and local communities.

“A number of improvements have been identified to minimise the odour, and these will be put in place over the coming weeks by the site operator Enovert. These include new gas wells and improved temporary capping.

“Natural Resources Wales’ incident hotline 0300 065 3000 (24 hour) is available for members of the public to report any incidents relating to the site”

A petition has been launched asking for ‘cleaner air’ in Johnstown. It reads “Johnstown landfill, used to dump the waste from Merseyside residents, has been stinking for quite some time.”

“On certain days the smell can be detected as far as the top of Pen Y Cae. Something needs to be done about the smell. For the mental and physical health of those living in the vicinity having to endure days, weeks, months and years of polluted rancid smelling air. The vulnerable amongst us and those who are unable to leave their homes are the most affected, is this fair that babies, the elderly and the infirm are having to live with this day in day out without a break from it while visiting other areas? ”

The petition has several hundred signatories, many with comments such as “It stinks when you drive past on the bypass so goodness knows what it’s like for the people living near there. Feel for them” and “I live off New Hall Road in Ruabon. It’s horrific the stench it causes and the flies in the summer, it’s not funny and something needs to be done.”

You can view the petition and comments here.

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