Concerns over planned rendering plant reopening

News that the rendering plant at Cottown is to reopen inevitably raises concerns among Kintore residents who recall the infamous Dundas Brothers plant that caused such offensive odours to waft over Kintore prior to the company’s liquidation in 2004.

The liquidation itself came as a result of the plant’s unenviable record, with a series of criminal prosecutions for environmental failings. No doubt aware of the plant’s troubled relationship with the residents of Kintore the new owners have invited members of the public to meet with them on May 13 at the Cottown plant to discuss its reopening.

This is how kintore.org.uk reported the end of the infamous “Kintore pong” in 2004:

DUNDAS BROTHERS GOES INTO LIQUIDATION

Less that a week after being served with prohibition and revocation orders, Dundas Brothers Ltd has gone into liquidation. It is believed that about 50 jobs are on the line. If the business closes permanently it is reported it could also leave a problem for local meat producers who would face added transport costs to take waste material to other plants for disposal.

SEPA SERVES NOTICE ON DUNDAS BROTHERS

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency has taken the first major step towards removing the authorisation which allows Dundas Brothers Ltd to operate its rendering plant at Kintore. Officers from SEPA served the revocation notice on Thursday, June 24, although the company does have the right to appeal against it.

The notice was served in the liight of the failure of Dundas Brothers to carry out the upgrading works necessary by June 19 and the continuing stream of complaints from the public - 350 so far this month.

The revocation notice follows a prohibition notice served the previous day. This required the removal of raw material stored outside the plant and required the company to stop accepting material for processing until improvements are made.

"It is very rare for SEPA to serve a revocation notice," explained Colin Gray of SEPA's Aberdeen office, "but we have given this company every opportunity to improve its environmental performance. Our duty is to protect and improve the environment and we are prepared to work with operators to achieve positive changes. However, Dundas Brothers Ltd has left us with no choice but to take this action."

The company has a history of criminal prosecutions for its poor environmental performance, most recently being fined £20,000 in 2002. SEPA has initiated a number of enforcement actions over the past months including the serving of three enforcement notices. SEPA is also reporting a number of breaches of the company's authorisation to the procurator fiscal.

In December 2003, SEPA varied the authorisation for the plant giving the operator six months to carry out substantial upgrading works to improve the odour abatement equipment on the site.

I can certainly recall a number of occasions in the period from 2002 to 2004 when I had to call SEPA and write to MSPs to complain about the offensive smells wafting several miles downwind from the plant.

We undoubtedly need reassurance from the new owners that we are not going to be subjected to such intolerable nuisance once again.
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