Paterson’s of Greenoakhill Ltd

Paterson’s of Greenoakhill Ltd

SEPA acknowledges the impact odour can have on communities.

We take complaints of odour from Paterson’s of Greenoakhill Ltd’s (Patersons) landfill at Broomhouse seriously and are actively working with the operator to address the issues and secure compliance.

We have developed this page to share details of SEPA’s ongoing regulatory activities and progress at the site with residents affected by the odour. 

SEPA update - 23 February 2023

On 23 February 2023, SEPA has withdrawn the partial Suspension Notice which was served on Paterson's of Greenoakhill Ltd on 25 January 2023. The landfill operator can recommence accepting all wastes allowed under their SEPA regulated permit.

The operator was required to take steps to prevent offensive off site odour. In the period since 25 January, the operator has undertaken engineering steps on site to install additional landfill gas management infrastructure to collect and utilise gas produced in their operational cell. They have also applied additional soils and a temporary cap to minimise fugitive gas release. SEPA officers have undertaken a series of off-site odour assessments since the operator completed their works on 17 February.

SEPA will continue to monitor odour and carry out regular site inspections to ensure that the operator is compliant with their permit and operating to the plans that they have provided in response to the suspension notice.

We ask that members of the public notify SEPA if they are impacted by offensive odour from Greenoakhill Landfill at Report Environmental Events to SEPA 

Reporting to SEPA

How do I report a pollution incident?

When reporting:

  • Contact SEPA as soon as you become aware of a potential pollution incident so we can begin investigations early.
  • Provide as much information as you can, including the location and any relevant details.
  • If the complaint is related to odour, there are a number of potential odour sources in the area, it is very helpful if you can be as descriptive as possible, as it can often help us in our investigations.
  • Examples of odours experienced previously include 
    • like a bin
    • waste
    • eggy
    • rotten food
    • sewage
    • faecal matter
    • like a drain
    • farm spreading
    • landfill gas
    • rotten vegetables
    • burnt sewage
  • If you are impacted by a sewage odour, please contact Glasgow City Council public health department by using the online form:  Report a Public Health Problem - Glasgow City Council or by calling 0141 287 1069.
  • Pollution reports can be submitted to SEPA at any time. Please note that, for recording purposes, only one complaint per household will be recorded in any 24 hour period.

For other enquiries, contact SEPA using the online form. 

Previous updates

Update: 15 February 2023

Since the Permit was partially suspended on 25 January 2023, SEPA officers have continued to monitor the operator’s progress with remedial measures, undertaking odour assessments both in response to public complaints and pro-actively. Weekly site visits have been carried out to ensure the operator is complying with the terms of the Suspension Notice and to provide advice and guidance on the corrective actions being taken.

The operator has been undertaking actions including placement of additional soils to reduce fugitive gas release and installation of additional gas management infrastructure including extraction wells.  Their programme projects that this work should be completed on or around 17 February 2023, after which they expect their off-site odour impact to reduce significantly.

SEPA is obliged to remove the Suspension Notice when the steps required to remove the risk of serious pollution are undertaken by the operator. These steps are to assess, identify and implement all measures necessary to ensure that waste operations at the site are carried out so that offensive odours do not become detectable beyond the site boundary. SEPA expects such steps to include the operator’s submission of a sustainable plan to operate the site without causing odour impact.

We ask that anyone who continues to experience offensive odour, which is impacting them and their amenity, notifies SEPA via our online form.

Landfill site permit partially suspended - January 2023

On 25 January 2023, in response to the ongoing odour impact from Greenoakhill Landfill, SEPA has partially suspended the operator’s Pollution Prevention and Control Permit to prohibit the ongoing landfilling of non-hazardous waste.

This enforcement measure requires the operator to identify and implement all necessary measures to ensure that waste operations are carried out so that offensive odours are not detected beyond the site. Local residents are unlikely to notice an immediate reduction in odour impact as there will be both short- and longer-term steps required to be taken by the operator to ensure that ongoing odour management is effective.

SEPA officers will continue to carry out assessments in the affected areas.

We ask that anyone who continues to experience offensive odour, which is impacting them and their amenity, notifies SEPA via our online form.

Landfill site served first Variable Monetary Penalty for eight days of offensive odours

15 December 2022

Paterson’s of Greenoakhill Ltd has been served with a civil penalty of £6,200 by SEPA for a breach of its environmental permit resulting in an offensive odour that affected local communities for eight days in June 2021 and 138 complaints.  

For more information read our full media release.

January 2023 update

As detailed in the December 2022 update, the site operator carried out a number of actions relating to landfill gas infrastructure with the expectation that this would alleviate the odour issues. However, since the 29 December 2022, there has been an increase in reports of odours from Patersons landfill.

SEPA Officers have undertaken multiple odour assessments over the last few weeks and substantiated complaints on 5 January and 7 January 2023.

A site visit on 11 January confirmed that an area of the landfill, separate to that identified during the 6 December 2022 site inspection, was now producing landfill gas and requires the installation of landfill gas collection wells. The operator is undertaking this work as a priority and SEPA is meeting with the operator on a weekly basis to monitor progress.

SEPA recognises the substantial impact this has had on the local community and the frustration this has caused.

Throughout January SEPA officers will be carrying out both reactive and proactive odour assessments of the affected areas to determine the scale of impact on the community and gather evidence.

SEPA remains committed to reaching a resolution. Further action in relation to odour breaches at the landfill is under consideration and will be reviewed in due course.

December 2022 update

SEPA Officers have undertaken four odour assessments and visited the site twice, on 28 November and 6 December 2022.

During the site inspection on 6 December an area of the landfill was found to be producing landfill gas. Paterson's agreed to bring forward landfill gas infrastructure works which will aim to collect and treat the gas through the on-site landfill gas management system.

The remedial works identified are now complete. The operator has confirmed 12 gas collection wells have been connected to the landfill gas management system. A gas survey was carried out by the operator on 20 December to identify if there are any further sources of fugitive gas emissions from the landfill.

SEPA officers visited the area to carry out an odour assessment on the 20 December and establish if the on-site works have helped reduce the impacts of odour on the surrounding community. At the time of the assessment no offensive odours were detected by SEPA.

SEPA will continue to monitor odour complaints from Paterson Landfill site and will take the necessary regulatory steps to secure permit compliance should further offensive odours be identified.

December 2021 Update

On 13 December 2021 SEPA Officers attended Paterson's landfill to confirm the completion of approximately 14,000 m2 of permanent capping and the installation of landfill gas collection infrastructure at an area of the site next to Hamilton Road (known as Cell 10 extension). As required by the July 2021 Enforcement Notice. Unfortunately, compliance with the Enforcement Notice has taken longer than expected (compliance date 30 September 2021). SEPA understands the frustration that the agreed works were not completed on time and we have relayed these concerns to the operator. During this period SEPA has continued to respond to complaints and has proactively attended the area to carry out odour assessments. The information gathered during the odour assessments along with a reduction in pollution reports would indicate that the capping material placed over Cell 10 Extension is currently providing improved odour control.

Ongoing odour management

  • No further waste will be tipped at Cell 10 Extensions. The new waste deposit area is approximately 250m from Hamilton Road.
  • The operator will undertake daily off-site odour checks.
  • The operator currently deploys 6 odour neutraliser units near the waste deposit area to mask any strong odours. The odour neutralisers are operational during office hours.

What next:

SEPA recognise the substantial impact that odour from Paterson's landfill has had on the surrounding area throughout this year.

Further enforcement in relation to odour breaches recorded in 2021 is under active consideration.

July 2021 Update

We are currently:

  • On the 22 July 2021 SEPA Officers served an Enforcement Notice on Patersons of Greenoakhill Ltd for non-compliance with the odour condition of the site Permit.  This Notice requires Patersons to complete waste deposits in an area of the site close to Hamilton Road (known as Cell 10 extension) and carryout capping and gas infrastructure works by 30 September 2021. It also requires the operator to provide an updated Odour Management Plan by 31 August 2021, detailing how they will manage odours on site and prevent offensive odours from escaping the site boundary.
  • Continuing regular engagement with the operator as a minimum on a fortnightly basis.
  • Undertaking routine site inspections with a focus on odour management.
  • Following up complaints with Patersons, requesting it assesses current onsite conditions for any faults.
  • At this time, we will be unable to provide a personal response to each complainant; instead, we will provide a standard email response and post updates on this webpage.
  • Undertaking proactive and reactive odour assessments of the affected areas.
  • Encouraging regular engagement between Patersons and the surrounding community until works are completed and when any future works are scheduled. Although this is ultimately a decision for Patersons whether they do, and not a requirement of the Permit.

Ongoing works to reduce odour:

  • SEPA continues to receive complaints in relations to odour, fly’s and noise from Patersons.
  • The operator commenced depositing waste at Cell 10 extension in approximately April 2021. During a previous site inspection SEPA Officers raised concerns about depositing waste at this location due to the close proximity of sensitive receptors.
  • The operator has attempted to manage the odour from this waste deposit by placing odour neutralisers close to this area. 2 are in operation all the time and a 3rd which is utilised when there is a Southerly wind.
  • Patersons have also increased the depth of daily cover applied to the waste and the end of each working day.
  • They have commenced fly spraying of this area and now currently spray the area 3 times a week in an attempt to manage the fly presence on site.

Progress with March 2021 actions:

  • As required by a Final Warning Letter served by SEPA in November 2020 the operator has completed the installation of approx. 30,000m2 of capping at the previous deposit area located near to the high point of the landfill. Of this capped area, the gas infrastructure has approx. 50% of the wells connected with the remaining wells coming on-line in August.
  • Increased frequency of maintenance around gas infrastructure.

Planning Application:

As a statutory consultee in the planning system, SEPA registered an Objection in Principle to the application to increase overall height and amend site contours within the landfill. It has been confirmed that Patersons have withdrawn their Planning Application.