Landfill Sites: Toxic Air

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs – in the House of Commons on 9th December 2021.

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Photo of Liz Twist Liz Twist Opposition Whip (Commons), Shadow Minister (Scotland)

What recent discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the potential impact on (a) the environment and (b) public health of toxic air from landfill sites.

Photo of Jo Churchill Jo Churchill The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Ministers have regular discussions with Cabinet colleagues on a range of issues. We work with the Environment Agency when necessary, and our chief scientific adviser engages with various experts to consider any adverse impacts arising from landfill sites.

Photo of Liz Twist Liz Twist Opposition Whip (Commons), Shadow Minister (Scotland)

My constituents have been plagued for many years by landfill sites that often produce really foul smells, and many of them are concerned about the health implications. Now that we are all much more aware of air quality issues, will the Government take further steps to review the advice issued by Public Health England on toxic smells from these sites?

Photo of Jo Churchill Jo Churchill The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Only last week I visited a landfill site in Newcastle-under-Lyme, and I know that it has a considerable impact on local communities. I also know that the hon. Lady has campaigned vigorously in respect of the site in Blaydon. We are now at the point of capture and contain: the site is being capped and the gases are being captured to prevent them from having that harmful impact. The site was monitored between January and September 2020, and the fumes were not found to be above safe limits.