Odours from factory

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For many years the mushroom compost making factory at Newington, near Bawtry, owned by Tunnel Tech (North) Ltd, has been polluting the whole of the surrounding area with odours that are quite disgusting.

Bassetlaw District Council, which has the responsibility for regulating the process has consistently failed to take action. In fact the council has allowed the factory to be enlarged with the result that the odours have increased.

Despite Doncaster Council saying, in 2003, that the odours have no health implications they are in fact made up of butanone, which causes irritation to the eyes and nose of humans but serious health effects in animals have been seen only at very high levels.

When inhaled, these effects included birth defects.

Butanone is a ketone and it is said that if left to build up, ketones can increase the acidity levels of your blood, which can affect your urine and may eventually cause serious damage to your liver and kidneys.

The odour also contains dimethyl sulfide, which is highly flammable and irritant to eyes and skin. It is harmful if swallowed and has an unpleasant odour at even extremely low concentrations. Another ingredient of the odour, acetaldehyde, is a probable carcinogen in humans.

In 1988, the International Agency for Research on Cancer stated: “There is sufficient evidence for the carcinogenicity of acetaldehyde (the major metabolite of ethanol) in experimental animals.”

And a report submitted to Bassetlaw District Council by Tunnel Tech in May this year found that these ingredients had been discovered in quantities much greater than the odour threshold.

Isn’t time for the authorities to take action to protect communities affected against these possible dangers?

Matthew Brearley,

Lilac Grove, Bawtry