Minister: BELCO Emissions Are ‘Alarming’

July 31, 2020

“The emissions and pollution emanating from the BELCO power station should be alarming to all of Bermuda,” Minister Jason Hayward said.

Minister Hayward said, “As the MP for Pembroke Central I am concerned by the pollution and increased emissions which are spewing from the plant.

“Area residents have made it clear that they are unhappy and would like for the matter to be rectified immediately. I have personally examined black soot and liquid rust-like residue on roofs, cars, and other property.

“The residents have genuine health and safety concerns. During my canvassing of the community, residents have complained that they are prevented from opening their windows as a result of the fumes which consume their neighbourhood.

“They expressed concern regarding the possibility of contaminated tank water from the slug on their roofs. We have also observed large cracks in residential properties from alleged constant vibration. As one should understand, residents have concerns about their general health and wellbeing; some have complained about constant migraines that have persisted since the new power station came online.

“The residents of Pembroke Central, namely St. John’s Road and the Mount Hill area, feel as though they are under siege. The community demands answers from BELCO; area residents were promised a cleaner facility but it has turned out be the contrary, a major health hazard. On July 27, I joined a community-organized meeting where residents came together to discuss the unfortunate situation at hand.

“As area representative, I have spoken with the President of BELCO and he as stated their empathy to the residents’ concerns and acknowledge that there have been issues with the new power station. BELCO has advised any affected residents to contact their Occupational Health Safety and Environment [OHSE] team who is responsible for responding to all incidents or concerns from residents.

“I have implored BELCO to meet with the residents and rectify this issue as a matter of urgency. Residents who have been affected by the increased emissions should contact BELCO by either emailing or calling 299-2802.”

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Comments (10)

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  1. Whistling Frog says:

    I’ve been saying this for the last umpteen years. I live in the area and every time I look at it I feel disgusted by the billowing smoke the looms over the white roofs. To hell with BELCO painting the roofs annually, I would be asking for a water filtering system instead…

  2. Bobby Barnes says:

    I agree with the Minister, Belco’s stacks especially one of the older ones was just puffing out black smoke last week. For years you have seen yellow/brown smoke streaming for miles and miles from them. Why the government never made them put fans on the stacks to push the smoke higher similar to the Tynes Bay stack.
    On another issue, both tugs today pumped black smoke out of their exhaust pipes, seems that the injectors in their engines aren’t set properly.

    • Jason says:

      Tynes bay doesn’t use fans to “push” emissions higher. The stack is built at a great height as this inherently creates a negative draft and draws the flue gas up and out. There are induced draft fans that create a negative pressure on their inlet side to allow the flue gas to flow from the furnace through the electro static precipitators and then upwards abs out of the stack. Tynes Bay is held for strict emissions limits which can result in the shutdown of a stream if exceeded.

  3. World Class says:

    On June 24th, BELCO said “Such occurrences should not occur in future now that the engines have been fully commissioned and are running at full capacity.”

    A month later and residents complaining about smell and fallout again. What is going on? It is suppose to be a state of the art new plant – cleaner, more efficient and more reliable. Residents and Bermudians need to know the truth. Why don’t we ever hear from Sean Durffy or Denis Pimental. What about the ex-President Denton Williams. Is the not in charge of the RA and they approved the new plant. I remember the days when Garry Madeiros and Vince Ingham were running the place. They always kept people informed.

  4. Disgruntled Local says:

    Don’t forget about people who think it is ok to burn trash from their homes on windy days .

  5. sandgrownan says:

    Perhaps the Minister should ask Belco if the new engines are appropriately “configured” for diesel fuel. Then ask why not.

    He should also talk to Belco about their environmental program, much of which is already in the public domain.

  6. Guess What says:

    Whatever solution Belco arrives at to rectify the problem will be paid for by me and you; be careful of following Hawyard and the this government down this road of “justice…” the ultimate solution is competition. That is where our focus should be…

  7. Craig Looby says:

    lol must be an election on the way… politicians dont care about belco issues

  8. Hope says:

    The pink elephant in the room. This has been going on for ages, but it’s nice to see some acknowledgement. I’ve seen thick black smoke spewing out of those stacks.

    This third stack should have never happened. It’s a travesty.

    At this day in age, Bermuda should have insisted on a renewable energy option. Scientists state that if the world does not reduce its carbon emissions by 2050, climate change and its effects will be irreversible.

  9. Kathy says:

    At the end of the day, a rapid transition to renewable energy is the ONLY answer for Bermuda. We have wind and we have sun and with game changing batteries and costs going down down down. THERE ARE NO MORE EXCUSES, other than pure greed on the part of both the Shareholders of BELCO and the BDA Government!!!