The recent short-term permission for a South Surrey galvanizing plant to discharge air contaminants has been put on hold.
The decision to stay the nine-month approval that had been granted to Ebco Metal Finishing LP by Metro Vancouver on March 1 was rendered May 26 by the Environmental Appeal Board.
“The stay will prevent the emission of air contaminants until such time as there is sufficient information to support an assumption that the (Metro Vancouver) approval provides adequate protection for human health and the environment,” EAB chair Alan Andison states in the decision. “The panel finds that, if a stay is denied, the potential harm to the applicants’ interests together with the public interests… outweighs the potential harm to Ebco if a stay is granted.”
The plant, at 18699 24 Ave., has been a source of concern for area residents for more than a year. Concerns escalated with word last December that the plant is expected to discharge more than six tonnes of emissions annually.
Following the March 1 approval, 14 appeals were submitted to the EAB, citing concerns ranging from the potential adverse effect of emissions on human, animal and plant health, to the potential impact on a food-distribution facility.
Ebco submitted that the appeals “raise no serious issues, and the applicants’ interests will suffer no harm if a stay is denied.”