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Stop Work Notice For Pacific Cement

Stop Work Notice For Pacific Cement
Pacific Cement Limited factory in Lami. Photo: Ronald Kumar.
December 07
11:03 2018

The Pacific Cement Limited in Lami has been issued a Stop Work Notice by the Department of Environment, Joshua Wycliffe, the Permanent Secretary for Environment confirmed.

Mr Wycliffe said after receiving a complaint from a resident, the Director of Environment Sandeep Singh visited the factory on Wednesday and issued a work prohibition notice.

“The transportation of cement and clinker, or even the truck movement and the mundane routine operations in the factory for the transporting of clinker in the shed and unloading of cement, generates dust,” he said.

“These are some factors that trigger the dust and the main source of dust is truck movements.

“Cement and clinker has always been an area of concern for the residents, factory workers and for people who commune on the roads.”

When such complaints come to the Ministry of Waterways and Environment, they have to observe the effectiveness of the immediate mitigation measures. If these factories/industries then comply with this, the ministry lifts the stop work orders.

This year four complaints have been lodged with the Department of Environment and Mr Wycliffe has ensured that it was all thoroughly investigated.

“We give them a pathway to remedy the breach and we will lift the notice after they enforce mitigation policies,” he said.

Mr Wycliffe said under the Environment Management Act (2005), the Department of Environment has issued an air pollution permit to Pacific Cement Ltd has to ensure that there is no dust emission generated during handling, transporting or even processing.

“We also require companies to provide dust mitigation plans to contain the dust from flying and reducing the dust from the facility onto the road,” said Mr Wycliffe.

This Act covers all aspects of dust management and if it’s not followed, then a prohibition notice would be issued again.

The Pacific Cement Limited is a subsidiary of Fijian Holdings Limited.

Group chief executive officer Nouzab Fareed said:  “We want to acknowledge there is dust emission sometimes, not all the time.

“We have taken all necessary precautions, but at the same time our companies do create dust.”

He said the cement factory needs more than 100,000 tonnes of clinker every year.

“So whenever clinker comes, it comes to Suva port and it is transported to Lami, so it is not only for Pacific Cement, but also from another cement producing factory,” said Mr Fareed.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

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