Two Plaid Cymru Members of the Senedd have called for government intervention to tackle toxic sites across Wales.
Peredur Owen Griffiths and Delyth Jewell – who both represent the South Wales East region – made the calls after a local authority admitted that the climate crisis has made one site in particular more difficult to manage.
The Labour-led Caerffili County Borough Council said “substantial rainfall” has had an adverse impact on their ability to manage leachate from the Ty Llwyd quarry in Ynysddu. This site had been used as a dumping ground by the notorious US chemical company Monsanto.
During Business Questions in the Senedd, Peredur said: “The issue of Ty Llwyd quarry in Ynysddu has been raised numerous times in the Siambr by myself and my colleague Delyth Jewell.
“This area on the face of it looks beautiful but it hides a dark secret as the notorious US chemical company Monsanto dumped and buried unknown quantities of toxic waste in the ground.
“Monsanto have long since gone, without paying a penny in compensation for the toxic legacy they have left. Meanwhile, local residents are still having to face the consequences of these environmental crimes.
“The Labour-run Caerffili County Borough Council – who have been known to downplay the dangers posed by Ty Llwyd over the years – have admitted that the climate crisis and the higher levels of rain we now have makes managing the threat posed by the dumped chemicals more difficult.”
He added: “Minister, is it time for this government to acknowledge that local authorities and NRW on their own are unable to tackle the growing threat posed by the toxic sites left as a result of our industrial heritage?
“Can we have a statement on the creation of a strategy to remedy these toxic sites as swiftly and effectively as possible and pursue the polluters with all the powers at our disposal?”
Delyth Jewell MS added: “Plaid Cymru is backing calls for action to clean up the Ty Llwyd site to prevent chemicals leaking into the environment.
“I share the frustration felt by local people and representatives. Many people quite rightly are concerned about this issue.
“We are aware of significant concerns surrounding several other sites across the Caerphilly borough where it’s feared that chemicals have been dumped.
“At these sites people report seeing leaking into the surrounding land and into our streams and rivers, especially at times of heavy rain.
“This will only become more of an issue with the changing weather patterns that will come our way because of climate change.
“Public bodies responsible for this land must work together to mitigate dangers and remedy the sites. We also need a polluter pays principle in future when it comes to these types of sites.”
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