Activists staged rallies outside SEPA offices in Ayr, Newton Stewart, Glasgow, Perth, Dingwall, Balloch, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Arbroath, Fort William, Dumfries and Lochgilphead on 26 July to protest flaring and climate impacts of Scotland's 3rd largest polluter, the Mossmorran gas plants in Fife.
Protests took place over Sunday and Monday as Exxon announced that work to tackle noise pollution will not take place in 2020 as planned, as reported on the BBC.
Climate Camp Scotland, alongside Mossmorran Action Group and other activists protested outside SEPA offices across Scotland to demand meaningful action on pollution from the Mossmorran facilities in Fife.
Scotland’s environmental regulator SEPA has cut back monitoring the country’s third-worst polluter Mossmorran during lock-down, leaving Exxon and Shell to self-report. Meanwhile, residents face horrendous noise, light and air pollution from the plants activities and flaring. Climate Camp Scotland says SEPA needs to get in shape and put communities first if we are to tackle the climate crisis at home.
SEPA’s board includes people with links to the oil and gas industry including Nicola Gordon, who worked for and holds shares in Shell, and Nick Martin, the former head of Weir Group, a major supplier of fracking technology.
James Glen, spokesman for Mossmorran Action Group, said Exxon was "using Covid as an excuse" to delay implementing essential noise mitigation because "their only interest is in protecting their bottom line".
"Communities are being exposed to such extreme levels of noise that residents are left terrified, condemned to sleepless nights, with their homes subject to visible vibration.
"Exxon's deplorable record of skimping on maintenance continues to be under major investigation by HSE.
"For too long, regulators have allowed Exxon to get away with operations which harm their neighbours, and Sepa should now live up to its mantra that environmental compliance is non-negotiable."
In 2012, ExxonMobil was fined £2.8 million for not reporting 33,000 tonnes of CO2 and in 2018 Shell was fined for under-reporting propane volumes over a three-year period.
There have been 363 reports from households surrounding the facility detailing the toll to physical and mental health that people face.
Climate Camp Scotland said: “We are looking for SEPA to remove all conflicts of interest as well as protect and restore trust with communities. We need a strong and well funded environmental agency to see out a just transition away from fossil fuels.”
In 2019, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon SNP declared a Climate Emergency. Climate Camp Scotland say that the Scottish Government must take seriously their international responsibility by phasing out the fossil fuel industry here in Scotland as part of a just transition. They must listen and act upon the environmental, health and safety concerns of workers and the locals who live near the Mossmorran plants.