Greens question government over “air quality” in Alhandra

According to householders, the air smells of “a kind of burnt rubber and sulphur” – and they hate it.

There is also an issue with dust – purportedly belched out of chimneys at the plant run by Cimpor (cement manufacturer) at Alhandra, near Vila Franca da Xira (district of Lisbon).

The problem has been “worsening for months” says Lusa, causing damage to vehicles as well as respiratory problems.

Cimpor however has apparently “denied any responsibility”, says the news agency, stressing the company maintains that the gases emitted from the chimneys of their ovens are “continuously monitored” and “values registered are significantly lower than limits defined by law”.

Nonetheless, “Os Verdes” (the Green party – one of the government’s alliance partners) are concerned, saying it is “unacceptable” that the population is being forced to live in a polluted atmosphere without knowing the potential dangers the foul air poses, or who or what is to blame.

This last week has been particularly bad, the Greens said in a statement, referring to factory activity in the area not only involving the manufacturing of cement but also the “transformation of cooking oils”.

The Greens want to know whether anyone has actually been properly monitoring the situation.

For now, there are still no answers. The Greens’ question has been presented in parliament, and the party, as well as the people of Alhandra – who have taken to communicating on the Chega de Poluição (Enough of Pollution) em Alhandra Facebook page – now have to wait to see what comes back.

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