EPA and the pong

THE Environment Protection Authority has not responded to a request from the Gippsland Times to confirm a notice to act will be issued to Esso following complaints of an odour emanating from its Longford gas plant.

Complaints about the odour were first made in November last year when a crude oil spill occurred from corroded decommissioned pipes. EPA investigated the complaint some weeks later but did not consider the odour at that time to be offensive enough to be a breach of licence.

The EPA’s Gippsland manager, Dieter Melzer, was reported by ABC radio as saying the EPA could not prove Esso had breached its licence but the company would be served with a notice by the end of this week, to conduct works to try and stop the odour.

“That’s why . . . we’re in the process of serving notice on Esso, requiring them to conduct some assessment work, to install equipment, require changes of operations and process to address this risk of odour,” Mr Melzer said.