Waste company behind Neasden and Wembley stench ‘could have permits revoked’ by Environment Agency

Seneca attacked over affect of bad smell on residents

Environmental chiefs have warned a waste management company that it could revoke its permits after it caused a bad smell in Neasden and Wembley.

Seneca Environmental Solutions has been slammed by The Environmental Agency after it failed to comply with an enforcement notice demanding it resolve the issue of the putrid odour.

In addition, the Agency told the Times they did not believe Seneca was showing ‘proper regard’ for affected residents as it emerged that the smell could continue for another week.

The odour was traced to a waste recovery facility in Hannah Close, Neasden, where a trio of companies were issued with the enforcement notice.

However, Seneca was the only company not to comply with the order – which gave a deadline of August 10.

The Agency told the Times that it was now examining what step to take next – including the possibility of revoking environmental permits.

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A spokesman said: “Our priority at the present time, is to see an immediate reduction of odour coming from the site and this can only be achieved by the operator moving their waste off site to other, more suitable locations.

“We do not feel that the site operators are showing proper regard for their local communities. Please be assured that we are continuing to actively consider the next steps in line with our enforcement and prosecution policy; this could include issuing further enforcement notices, prosecuting the operators or even revoking their environmental permits.

“We are continuing to treat this as a very serious issue and are devoting considerable resources to address the odour problem.”

The news came as it was also revealed that Seneca had warned the Agency on last Friday (17), that it would take seven to 10 days to remove the remaining odours from the facility.

The spokesman said that the Agency had received around 200 complaints about the smell and that it had officers both at the waste site and in the surrounding areas as Seneca continued to clear waste ‘at a rate of approximately 1,000 tonnes per day’.

Michael McLarnon, operations director for Seneca, said: “The materials build up in the facility was due to a mechanical breakdown in the plant.

“Every effort has been made to resolve this issue as quickly as possible and our team has worked 24 hours per day since the mechanical failure occurred.

“The material in question is being removed in complete compliance with the requirements of the Environment Agency.

“Our continued efforts will see all of this material removed from the facility by this weekend.

“We take our obligations very seriously and apologise for any inconvenience we have caused.”