Wexford People

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Residents fight sewage plant plans


Protesters from the local area outside the proposed site of the waste water plant.

Protesters from the local area outside the proposed site of the waste water plant.

Protesters from the local area outside the proposed site of the waste water plant.

PEOPLE living in Killurin are fighting plans for a sewage treatment plant in their neighbourhood after the county council offered a section of the long-defunct landfill to a waste water treatment company.

Waste Water Treatment Solutions Ltd. is applying for permission to build an agricultural shed to house a lime sludge stablisation mixing unit, a soil conditioner, underground storage tank, wash bay and drainage works with CCTV at the Deeps, Killurin.

An environmental odour assessment contained with the application predicts that the contents of five septic tanks would be disposed of every week in year one, rising to 15 a week by year three and beyond. It says the sludge mixing unit would only operate for approximately one hour maximum, once a week.

Odour sensitive receptors would be located near properties on the boundary of the site and neighbours would be provided with contact information in the event that there were any smells.

'We are going to fight it as hard as we can ag the moment vecvause we don't want that in our midst,' said local resident Reg Rothwell, one of a group of more than 80 people determined to fight the plans.

Around 30 of their number gathered outside the entrance to old dump on Friday to head Mr Rothwell rail again the county council and WWTS.

'We have, in this area put up with foul gagging smells from the old dump..and also the piggery for many years,' he said.

'When the old dump was capped Wexford County Council promised us that they would make an amenity area for the people of this area who had put up with flies, stink and dirt from the facility for many years.. Does (Director of Services) Tony Larkin consider a sludge treatment plant fits that?'

The protesters said that by today (Tuesday), they will have more than 80 separate objections submitted to the council.

WWTS says Wexford has around 26,276 septic tanks, the third highest in the country, and the site at the old Killurin landfill, which closed in 2008, was the best option, given the very limited capacity at the existing treatment plant in Kerlogue.

In a section on its background in the planning apploication, WWTS Ltd (sewage.ie) says it was set up in 2011 by Justin and Christina Kelly. The company obtained a waste permit collection permit and the waste water treatment plant in Kerlogue was the main point of disposal. The company provides other services in the waste wate asector, including environmental engineering..

It says the reason for a lime stabilisation unit is that access to the treatment plant in Kerlogue for disposal is extremely limited. Access to the plant is only available if there is access to the plant.

WWTS Ltd. is required to contact the plant manager to arrange access, but in instances there only seems to be access to take a very small amount into the plant.

Therefore this sector of the business is stagnant and can not be grown. Our business is dependent on the supply of a service to the private customer and having to try and arrange access to Kerlogue is very undependable, says a submission on behalf of WWTS by Justin Kelly, from Taghmon-based Capital Surveys.

It says a nature of potential sites were evaluated for the project and Wexford County Council had offered a section of the old landfill in Killurin (recycling area) for the proposed development.

The location of the nearest dwelling is 270 metres each of the proposed site.. which has mature boundaries and is located beside a large piggery.

The assessment says that WWTS recognises that there is potential, albeit low, for an increase in odour due to the proposed development. If mismanaged or left unmitigated, odour generating activies could result in adour annoyance at surrounding odour sensitive receptors.

'The principal odour mitigation equipment.. at the sludge stablisation development are ventilated air extraction of the internal space to a carbon filter and adour control misting within the production area.'

It said WWTS will source and utilise a mister and odour stabilisers and/or fragranced additives if required.

The assessment says potential operational sources of odour within the proposed development would be the overnight storage of trucks containing solids, washing trucks, and the transfer of sludge from the truck prior to lime treatment and inadequate stabilities of the sludge product.

Neighbours shold be issued with a hotline and all odour complaints should be investigated and remedied if originating from the development while a weekly odour check should be carried out along the boundary of the site.

The assessment concludes that it is anticipated that there would be no significant impact what are termed odour-sensitive locations.

Locals say they don't believe that the plant would be problem free and pointed to issues with a similar operation at Adamstown, which has come in for serious criticism.

They say the area in which the proposed treatment plant would be located is in a special area of conservation 'beside the lovely River Slaney, with a picnic area and a very active rowing club and pleasure boating amenity.'

And there were fears about increased traffic on a quiet country road and possible flooding.

Wexford People