Noise Issues – Updated

Published by FFBRA on

FFBRA received a number of reports from our members regarding the noise at night on Tuesday 25th and Wednesday 26th from the Lower Stumble Flow Test site.

FFBRA raised concerns on behalf of it’s members and received the following responses detailed below. Echo Barriers were installed at the site on Thursday as a result of the complaints, which has helped with the noise. We are still waiting for Angus to release the noise figures from the 24/7 monitoring to either WSCC or the EA and will be chasing this up with both authorities next week.

WSCC on Thursday 27th September at 7.48am

Sorry to hear of the disruption last night. Just to confirm, I have passed this on to Angus who are looking into it now.
Someone will come back to you as soon as possible.
Kind regards
Jane

A further update was received from WSCC on Friday

As stated below, Wednesday night’s noise concerns were duly passed on to Angus. Although they are of the opinion, based on their noise monitoring results, that noise levels were within the agreed limits of the planning permission they have nevertheless taken steps to further reduce noise at the site and on Thursday installed ‘echo barriers’ around the generators. We have asked for the noise monitoring results from Angus to confirm what the levels were.

 

The generators appear to be the main producers of sound at the site and this should, therefore, result in a further reduction of noise produced. Indeed, neither the Council nor the Environment Agency received noise complaints over Thursday night, so these may well have helped the situation.

 

Please be assured that any noise complaints are taken seriously and looked into as soon as possible to try and resolve any disturbance.

The EA on Thursday 27th September at 12.56

The Environment Agency received reports of noise last night, 26 September, from the locality of Angus Energy’s Lower Stumble oil and gas exploration facility. We are reviewing the potential causes of noise with the operator and if further actions can be taken to reduce noise. We will update those who reported the noise, if they requested feedback, once we have concluded our review.

Please see the enclosed information which will answer your questions regarding how to contact us and in which circumstances. As we operate 24/7 and have a number of officers in the team which covers Balcombe, we cannot say who would be taking forward any particular incident report. For noise, the planning permission and environmental permit contains different but complementary conditions. For each noise report, West Sussex County Council and the Environment Agency will decide which authority is most appropriate to lead.

A FFBRA representative also spoke with the the security team at the Lower Stumble site on Thursday morning – the Site Manager was arriving shortly, they had raised the complaints received by two residents who had reported the issues to them at the gate in the middle of the night and had escalated “up to management”.

An update from Angus on Thursday 27th

Naturally, we too are concerned how noise may affect our neighbors. In order to ensure we remain in strict compliance with noise parameters set forth under the planning conditions by the WSCC,  we continuously monitor noise from our site on a 24 hour basis. Please note noise monitoring at the site shows we are operating within the published constraints of the planning conditions.

Due to your concern, we have installed ‘echo barriers’ which should reduce the sound produced further below the agreed levels.

Reporting a Noise Issue

If you are a Balcombe Resident and being disturbed by the noise from Lower Stumble please report it to the authorities. Noise monitoring and enforcement is shared between the Environment Agency (EA) and West Sussex County Council (WSCC). The EA have stated “For noise, the planning permission and environmental permit contains different but complementary conditions. For each noise report, West Sussex County Council and the Environment Agency will decide which authority is most appropriate to lead.” therefore it is best to report any issues to both agencies.

How to report a noise issue:

By Phone:
– call The EA 0800 80 70 60 (Freephone, 24 hour service)
– call Angus Energy Limited on 0203 974 2991
By Email to all of the below:
– The EA – SSDEnquiries@environment-agency.gov.uk
– WSCC – Jane.Moseley@westsussex.gov.uk
– WSCC – chris.bartlett@westsussex.gov.uk
– Angus – community@angusenergy.co.uk
– FFBRA – info@frackfreebalcombe.co.uk
– Parish Council – parish.clerk@btconnect.com

The Environment Agency have also shared a flyer – Environment Agency Contact Flyer

Please help our campaign to keep the Oil and Gas Industry out of Balcombe. Any donation however small will help to fight the next planning application.  You can donate to FFBRA online via Paypal using your Credit or Debit card.

The Flow Test Diary page is recording Angus’ Flow Test Operations and keeping our members and supporters uptodate with the latest information and news happening onsite.