George Kerevan: This is a tale of Big Oil and how the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) was captured by corporate interests. The moral of this tale is simple: if Scotland is to meet its climate change targets, SEPA needs to be reformed root and branch and its pro-big business board replaced immediately. The beginning of February 2020 saw yet another repeat episode of intense “flaring” at the Shell-Exxon petrochemical complex at Mossmorran, near Cowdenbeath in Fife. Flaring occurs when the run-down plastics-making plant malfunctions and its natural gas feed from the North Sea has to be burned off into the atmosphere. This in turn lights up the night sky in Fife like bright sunshine and pumps CO2 into the atmosphere in vast quantities. A damning SEPA report in November 2017 listed the Mossmorran monstrosity as the third biggest emitter of CO2 in Scotland (after INEOS at Grangemouth and the now-closed Longannet power station). At that point, the plant hit a 14-year high for CO2 emissions, unnecessarily pumping 885,580 tonnes of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere. Shell’s separate operation at Mossmorran added another 200,000 tonnes of CO2 discharge, taking the total to 1.1 million tonnes.
Bella Caledonia 13th Feb 2020 read more »