Residents in limbo over stink report

COFFS Harbour residents irate about a bad odour will have to wait at least another week before getting their hands on a scientific report into the smells emanating from the Englands Road Resource Recovery Park.

A small but determined group of residents gathered at Coffs Harbour City council chambers on Monday night to hear from air quality consultant Dr Kerry Holmes, who has been sampling odours from different areas of the park since March.

Dr Holmes said a model of odour levels from 2007 predicted that emissions were going to disperse beyond the boundary of the Biomass facility.

“The measurements taken in 2008 show existing operations are showing more odour emissions than the Department of Environment and Climate Change's criteria,” Dr Holmes told the meeting.

“But not much more - we are working with Biomass to fine tune their operations.”

The result is nothing new to residents, who have been heavily campaigning for clean air for months and have been eagerly awaiting the release of Dr Holmes' report.

But they'll have to wait a little longer, as Coffs Harbour City Council's Jeff Green claims the report 'needs to be brought up to appropriate standards' before a draft can be released to the public.

Member for Coffs Harbour Andrew Fraser questioned why the report, which was handed to council last Friday, had yet to be given to residents.

“What else is being covered up besides the garbage?” Mr Fraser said.

“The residents ask and are put off for years and the smell's still there - another tonne of landfill means nothing to people who are living with the stench. If the odours are not meeting licensed conditions, someone has to act on it.”

For resident Zeno Baston, the withholding of the report is no surprise.

“It just keeps going round in circles,” Mr Baston said.

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