Update on dust from Lafarge 1st Nov 2019

At the the end of last week Bath and other areas received a coating of dust believed to have come from Lafarge Cement Plant.

Complaints from various residents were made to the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MOECP) and Lafarge.

The MOECP came out and took samples and were to do the same at Lafarge.

Lafarge responded with;

The plant was in a transition phase in the morning and not in normal operation and was brought into normal ranges as quickly as feasible.

From the information we have it appears that we are within the allowable limits as per the ministry’s guidelines / limits for protection of human health and the environment.

Further communication,

I am writing in follow up to concerns about resident’s observations of dust adhering to various surfaces at their home and to provide an interim update while we continue to investigate and organize follow up.

Lafarge has conducted an initial investigation and believes that the dust is likely comprised of clinker dust from the Bath plant.  The plant is now operating normally and additional releases are not expected. We understand the concerns raised and we have offered to arrange samples to be taken by an Environmental Sampling specialist.

While more details will be forthcoming, it is Lafarge’s intention to engage a specialist firm to work with the community to, for example, clean affected vehicles and other actions to address the concerns raised.  I will follow up with additional information in the coming days and weeks as more is learned.

Finally, we apologize for the disruption to all affected people and we do intend to make it right.

Note. We have been informed that whatever caused this dust has now been repaired thus the comment that the plant is now running normally. Lafarge have engaged a specialist firm who has already made contact with at least one resident.

Another communication,

We wanted to give a quick update as we have been receiving lots of questions relating to health concerns.

Lafarge does not believe that there will be any lasting health effects from the cement clinker dust emitted from the facility last week and we are in the process of confirming that.

From Robert Cumming, Lafarge Director of Environment responding to a resident,

We realize and agree with the need to provide more information but we also want to ensure it’s accurate and credible (backed up by science and data).

Our first priority was to ensure releases were addressed and prevented and then on the cleanup – both are underway. Now we are turning to a better explanation and we’ll need a bit more time. But your instinct is the same as ours to better explain what it all means in layperson language.

More to come soon!

P Lease note that contacts are on the LCCRA website, and the contacts at Lafarge and MOECP are readily available.

The MOECP have been on site, taken various samples including doing a stack test. All data from emission tracking devices has been taken from last week onwards and is being reviewed by their scientists. MOECP have met with KFL&A Public Health.

Once the tests on the dust come back which they believe will be in the next few days they will again be reviewed by both MOECP and KFL&A Public Health.

We will keep you updated when more information comes in. (LCCRA)

One Comment, RSS

  • Coral Henderson

    I used a hand operated leaf mulcher when raking/bagging the leaves which dropped from my large front yard tree. I was confused by the clouds of dust which were coming out of the collection bag (over my shoulder). I was breathing in this dust, and it was all over my clothes and shoes. I now suspect the Lafarge dust was on the leaves of my tree—and is now in my lungs.
    I also noted a strange white clogged residue all over the grass in front of my spruce tree. It is in a direct line from the downspout of my roof waves trough system. Again, I suspect now that this was a result of the Lafarge dust emission.
    I am worried about my health, the health of my trees/plants/landscape, my furnace system, and my roof/eaves troughs.
    The leaf muncher bag can be inspected, and the bagged leaves—so far—are still at the curb. Furnace filter can also be inspected.
    Please respond.

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