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Eastbourne & Willingdon Lib Dems

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Noxious Haze in August Update

December 8, 2017 12:12 PM
By Stephen Lloyd

I am pleased to be able to tell all of Eastbourne and Willingdon's residents that my lobbying (nagging!) of the government and various statutory authorities over the mystery noxious haze which struck Birling Gap and much of Eastbourne last August has paid some dividends.

It appears as though they have, at last, agreed to undertake a review into the whole process on the day, why the gas was not collected for later sampling and what lessons can be learned for future reference should such a chemical cloud envelop us again.

To be frank it has been a bit like pulling teeth to get DEFRA, the lead government department, to step up in this way but I am glad they are now, finally, conducting a proper review. I'll wait for the conclusions about what went wrong with interest, what needs to be done so that our relevant statutory authorities are better prepared, and ultimately, that the resource is provided so the appropriate gas-collecting equipment is purchased in future.

I have to say that an apology from the minister in charge, Dr Thérèse Coffey at DEFRA for taking so long to red-light an enquiry wouldn't have come amiss either, but I guess we count our victories one small step at a time......