Residents living near two organic waste facilities in London are promising to take action if the city fails to address persistent odour issues.
A meeting was held Thursday night, where neighbours of Orgaworld and StormFisher shared their long standing concerns about foul smells ruining property values and making living nearby very unpleasant.
“We’re getting hit with the smells when the wind comes from either direction out of the southwest or out of the opposite direction, we keep getting hit by the smells,” said Allan Tipping, who lives within a kilometre of Orgaworld.
Tipping said they’re considering legal action, withholding their property taxes, or organizing picket lines outside of the businesses if the city doesn’t address the issue.
“We’d like the city to stand up and say, ‘look, we’ve got millions of taxes potentially out here, we’re collecting $100,000 from these facilities, or just over, it’s time for them to leave the city,” said Tipping.
Stormfisher opened six years ago, while Orgaworld has been operating in south London since 2007. Tipping said they tried to prevent Orgaworld from setting up shop so close to a residential area.
“There were actually letters sent to the city from the local Ministry, from other people, from us with petitions, asking that the city do not allow these facilities to go in because of track records in other communities with these facilities causing these major odours,” said Tipping.
Mayor Matt Brown and Councillor Harold Usher attended the meeting, and vowed to bring the issue before Council. Residents have given the city until next March to address their concerns.
“We really hope that the city will step up, put this before Council, impose the municipal act which they can use to close these facilities down,” Tipping said. “It is a very strong tool, we just need the city to be strong, the Council, the Mayor, and enact that act that protects us.”
Stormfisher opened six years ago, while Orgaworld has been operating in south London since 2007. The $25 million dollar facility on Wellington Road South near Dingman takes in green-bin waste from Toronto, Vaughan and St. Thomas.
Orgaworld was fined $45,000 in 2012 for not following rules to reduce and control odours, and was fined $250,000 dollars in 2014 for odour emissions.
Orgaworld currently faces 10 charges that were laid this past July relating to odour emissions, and failing to comply with a condition of an Environmental Compliance Approval.