The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) issued a $7,500 fi ne to Katandra Poultry Farm for poor sediment and erosion controls at the company’s Peats Ridge property.
EPA Hunter manager, Mr Adam Gilligan said the EPA investigated Katandra Poultry Farm for potential breaches of its Environment Protection Licence after receiving complaints about environmental impacts from signifi cant amounts of soil which had been imported to the property. “On February 25, 2015 the EPA inspected Katandra Poultry Farm and observed soil deposited on an area of the site covering approximately 27,000 square metres,’ Mr Gilligan said.
“Katandra Poultry Farm did not have appropriate measures in place to manage the potential for sediment to erode and be carried off the premises,” he said. Despite the EPA directing Katandra Poultry Farm to immediately install appropriate mitigation controls, follow up inspections showed the farm had failed to do so.
“When the EPA returned to the premises in June 2015, we identified sediment on the surrounding roads that appeared to have been carried by trucks as these left the farm. “The EPA also observed muddy water fl owing off the fi ll area into Popran National Park and sediment laden water in a creek that runs through the property. A subsequent inspection in November 2015 revealed that despite some improvements, the erosion and sediment controls were still inadequate. “Good sediment and erosion controls are important to ensure that the environment and community are protected. “If sediment laden waters leave a site and enter watercourses, this can have a major impact on aquatic organisms.
“The EPA expects licensee’s to comply with their licence at all times. “The EPA will take further action, potentially including legal proceedings, if further breaches occur,” said Mr Gilligan. Penalty notices are one of a number of tools the EPA can use to achieve environmental compliance, including formal warnings, licence conditions, notices and directions, mandatory audits, enforceable undertakings, legally binding pollution reduction programs and prosecutions.
The EPA must also take a range of factors into account before delivering a proportionate regulatory response, including the degree of environmental harm, whether or not there are any real or potential health impacts, if the action of the offender was deliberate, compliance history, public interest and best environmental outcomes.