I understand that a follow-up request has been lodged to ascertain exactly which power station is tasked with emitting these highly toxic chemicals.That was how I left it a few days ago on the subject of UKBA's contribution to electricity generation ... with goods confiscated from cross-border shoppers. A solution which does no 'stakeholder' any favours.
The response has now been received. Apparently, the destination of all that contraband is so very secret that revealing its location would be a threat to security.
I can confirm that the UK Border Agency holds the information that you requested. However, after careful consideration we have decided that the information is exempt from disclosure under section 31 2 (i) of the Freedom of Information Act. This provides that information can be withheld where disclosure would prejudice the purpose of securing health, safety and welfare of persons at work and the public interest falls in favour of applying the exemption.In short. If they tell you where the baccy is being burned, hordes of disgruntled trippers are going to rock up with pitchforks and torches to grab the stuff back. Or are they scared of the perennially-terrified driving their diesel-powered 4x4s up there to complain about their pure air being contaminated? Could be either, but they don't elaborate.
We have considered the public interest there may be in the fact that the tobacco is shredded and used as an alternative power supply. Whilst the information that the Agency recycles its seized goods is already in the public domain, we feel that the disclosure of the name and address of the power station where the alternative fuel product is burned outweighs the public interest in disclosing these details.
There is an argument in (sic) to support the public interest in releasing this information on the grounds that it provides greater transparency with regards to outside organizations with whom the agency works. It may also assist the public in being able to develop an understanding of the processes adhered to in this instance however, ff (sic) we were to disclose this information it could substantially jeopardise the health, safety and welfare of the contractors acting on the Agency’s behalf. Due to the nature of the work involved all the Agency’s Contractors require anonymity in order to safely undertake the work of the Agency.
Disclosure of this information could put at risk the safety and welfare of the staff at the site where the tobacco is being shredded and transformed into an alternative fuel product. If this information was made public it could increase the risk of recovery by force of the tobacco product prior to it undergoing the necessary treatment processes. This is clearly not in the public interest.
However, secret the plant must stay as a vital matter of health and safety.
The instigator hasn't taken this lying down, of course. We're talking serious health threats here after all.
With reference to your reply to the above FOI request dated 29th June 2011, I am requesting an independent internal review of your decision not to supply the information that I requested.In light of the recent assertion that secondhand smoke is more dangerous than sucking on a car's exhaust pipe, it's uncommonly worthy of the enquirer to go the extra yard on this issue, don't you think?
You state that information is exempt from disclosure under section 31 2 (i) of the Freedom of Information Act as disclosure would prejudice the purpose of securing health, safety and welfare of persons. The information that I requested is to secure the health, safety and welfare of people that may be being exposed to deadly 'second hand smoke' from the burning of 'shredded tobacco'.
In view of this known deadly health hazard, I believe that the whereabouts of the burning of this 'alternative power supply' should be known to the public whose health may be in considerable danger.
Please God let the place be in or around Milton Keynes.