Following meetings with DOI/DEFA, and in reply to my supplementary question (in italics below) on the pollution from the Raggatt (Keys 28th June), the minister confirmed that progress is made towards identifying a solution to the discharge of leachate from the Raggart, possibly through Meary Veg.
Would the Minister agree with me that… we should not be putting this discharge at all into the Peel Bay and, in actual fact, if it was built now, it would not be allowed; it is only permitted under the concept of grandfather rights? Would he consider re-looking at those grandfather rights?
Would he also agree with me that we need an effective treatment of this, whether it be through the Peel sewerage system or otherwise, to actually eliminate this and we need stop putting these quite harmful contaminants into Peel Bay?
One thing I will support is that, to be in the situation we are now and not having a proper facility in place … I would support the Member for Peel saying that, but we are where we are, and we have to find solutions to rectify the problems at the Raggatt and throughout the Isle of Man.…..
I can confidently say that we have had many discussions with our colleagues in the Department of Infrastructure to find a suitable way forward and identify a site. I know the Department of Infrastructure recently put out a news release for expressions of interest, and I would be very interested to know how that has gone on. I believe they are still out.
In regard to finding alternative solutions to this, as I say, the issue is not straightforward; as you know, the levels of contaminants coming from the facility are not consistent. Analysis of samples taken during the early, middle and end stages of a single tanker-filling operation show that the level of PCBs, for example, vary significantly during the process, indicating that the levels of PCBs vary significantly from place to place.
The Member will be interested to know we are working with the Manx Utilities Authority at the moment, and the Department of Infrastructure on a trial, to identify if we can use the Meary Veg plant to substantially reduce the level of PCBs contaminants in the leachate….