Closer Cooperation in Controlling Air Pollution and Bad Odours

Today, Ansis Zeltiņš, CEO of the Freeport of Riga Authority, met with representatives of the State Environmental Service (hereinafter referred to as “SES”) and the Port Police, as well as the management of the PARS TERMINAL company in order to discuss yesterday’s case of the bad odour in Vecmīlgrāvis and decide on further actions.

As is known, responding to complaints by residents, SES and the Port Police performed inspections and air quality measurements to determine the origin and source of the bad smell. In accordance with SES information, the expected results of analyses will show whether the bad odour spread from the PARS TERMINAL port operating company in Kundziņsala, which at the time handled catalytic gasoil products on a ship.

In order to ensure more effective supervision and control of processes, authorities have agreed to cooperate more closely in the future, involving port companies in the fast exchange of information. While performing handling operations, bad odours are not always detected by means of measuring devices available to companies at the terminal itself. The faster the company receives information about complaints, the faster it can find and eliminate their causes.

At the same time, PARS TERMINAL expressed its readiness to work on technological solutions in order to be able to reduce bad smells ending up in air as a result of handling of oil products in the future. Likewise, the company is ready to cooperate with SES, if necessary, by performing regular analyses of the composition of handled oil products, as well as carefully assessing the speed of cargo handling.

“Companies at the port of Riga must work in a manner to refrain from inconveniencing residents and causing a threat to the urban environment as much as possible. Even though any handling of oil products is related to a minor mixture of inert gas and cargo exhalations from the ship ending up in the atmosphere, it is crucial that every cargo handling terminal observes all environmental requirements and regulations. Further on, we will monitor the operation of every terminal even more strictly and in the event of violations, the guilty persons will be held liable”, Ansis Zeltiņš, CEO of the Freeport of Riga Authority, emphasised.

In accordance with laws and regulations, Category B permits are issued to port companies by the State Environmental Service, which also controls monitoring of the conditions of the permit.

Regular air pollution monitoring is also carried out by the Port Police on a 24/7 mode within the entire territory of the port. If there are any suspicions about cases of environmental pollution, residents are urged to contact the Port Police by phone at +371 67090777.