Friday, 29 January 2010


With air quality around the Isle being of interest at the moment and with at least 5 sites showing excessive levels of nitrogen di-oxide (NO2), it might be interesting to remember that Thanet was once a location that attracted not only TB patients but also asthmatic children to many small independent schools to breathe our nice clean air. Now we seem to have more asthma cases, lung disorders and lung cancer than anywhere else in Kent.

In December, Tim Garbutt asked the MOD about the fires being burned at Manston by The Defence Fire School.  Here is the information he received and please visit to learn more about lack of air quality and an even greater lack of monitoring:

In 2009 there were 1,009 fires at MOD Manston for firefighter training.
About 92,500 litres of foam concentrate was used.Interestingly there was £17k of non-MOD revenue and and a cost of the water of £36k.The water and foam runoff was drained into the sewerage system.Foam wasn't used on any grassed areas and - gulp - monitoring was undertaken by TDC and Amanda Berry.

A member of the 'Strife' team was assigned two weeks ago to 'capture' the effects of the training fires at Manston. The first picture, taken last week, shows the pollution blowing in the normal (SW wind driven) direction over our built up areas and was taken at Tesco car-park in Westwood Cross. The picture below, taken on Tuesday, shows one of two fires sending pollution out in a safer direction driven by an E wind.

Readers need to remember that our prominent winds are from the SW and that the average of 3 fires a day at Manston thus sends pollution over our main urban areas over the Isle on a regular and continuous basis. I am not an expert in these matters but it seems to me that as our Council shows disregard for pollution of our aquifer and pollution in the air, can it really claim to be following sustainable environmental policies?  What would an  air quality monitor at the main Westwood Cross roundabout reveal about pollutants at 2pm on an average Saturday traffic grid-lock there?


Peter Checksfield said...

I certainly agree with you regarding the fires at Manston, but how many people (in Thanet & elsewhere) that complain about the environment are really willing to do something about it such as give up their cars & cycle / walk / get a bus / get a lower paid job closer to home / etc?

Voice said...

That's only a drop in the ocean against all of the fuel/fumes/ nasties that comes straight off the world's busiest shipping lane when the wind is pointing the wrong direction. Think of it as ongoing over years and progressively getting worse.

It's not just Thnaet it effects, but most of Kent. They've been testing stuff at Manston for a long time. Bet on the scale of things it doesn't make a blind bit of difference.

Old news Bertie... although didn't expect anything less off you, spouting verbal diarrhea as per usual.

Anonymous said...

Surely if there is water in the air, or more to the point, it is raining; then the pollutants are going to come back down and be washed into the crops that are growing?

Or am I being naive?

Anonymous said...

Tim has done good work on FOI applications revealing the circumstances of the Thor fire two years ago and the historical levels of airborne mercury pollution twenty times the acceptable limit.

I am questioning (and the submission has been acknowledged into documentation by the Iraq Inquiry Cttee) the circumstances in which Thor (and other Thanet activity) has escaped action by the authorities for so long. Given the role of Thor in the WMD case made against Saddam.

In the small world there are coincidences. One of which is that Tim I believe was represented in another case by the eminent Giovanni Di Stefano. Lawyer and friend of Saddam and an officer in Arkan's Serbian paramilitaries.

I wonder what would happen if a lawyer of the huge ability and resources of Giovanni was to turn his attention to these matters.

Bertie Biggles said...

Ken, had to edit a word.
Delete Comment From: Thanet Strife

Blogger Ken Gregory said...

Bertie *****
You should know that TDC have no control over the Training school at Manston. We have taken action in the past against civilian burning, but cannot against MOD. (Crown Immunity). If we could maybe we would!

29 January 2010 11:36
When pollution blows off MOD Land, I am sure you can!

Voice of 10.59, no need to be rude, it might become a bad habit. Odd you should consider 1,009 fires at Manston in 2009 as 'old news'; that was a recent FoI request from Tim. Hadn't thought of shipping being a problem as predominant winds tend to blow off shore in Thanet, thanks.

Anonymous said...

You think it is bad now wait until another couple of years when Chna Gateway is up and running and we have hundreds of HGV going in and out Manston for 24 hrs a day, the pollution will cause nothing but death for many in Thanet, then if the extension of the airport goes ahead you can say goodbye everything in the future there will be no farrmland to grow our own crops as it will be covered in thick concrete, our natural water supply will be damaged beyond repair, wild life will be gone forever and everyone walking around with masks on our faces to stop the pol and all because TDC didn't listen to the people, warning them of the polution which will damage our lungs and shrten our lives.
China is already living like this, because of our greed and inability to see what damage we are doing, TDC will destroy Thanet by 2020 TDC has an environmental officer who knows nothing about the Ozone level or that pollution caused by too many vehicles in Thanet, what chance have we got with so many inexperience people running Thanet.

Anonymous said...

Help indeed, but not as we know it?

Trouble is, that the button has already been pushed. Environmental Health in Thanet has gone to Hell in a Handcart.

Trust no one but yourself people, as TDC cannot be trusted, the Bloggers and the FOI have proved that.

10:59 A question of Blight 10:59 a question of Blight - and your rear end detritus