The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has issued a $15,000 penalty notice and an official caution to producer of pet food raw meats, Cool-Off.
Craig Bretherton, EPA Manager South West said that the EPA had taken this action when Cool-Off polluted a nearby creek around the 23rd of July this year.
The pollution was caused by the rupturing of a waste water pipe on the company’s premises at Howlong.
“The EPA was made aware of this incident on the 27 July when a community member reported the pollution” Mr Bretherton said.
“Waste water from the pet food processing plant escaped from the premises and drained onto a neighbouring property and polluted a creek”.
Mr Bretherton added, “The EPA has worked with the Company to have the pollution cleaned up. The company have repaired the waste water pipe and is also reviewing its pollution control and management systems to ensure this type of pollution incident does not reoccur.”
“This incident demonstrates the need for all companies to be vigilant in the management and monitoring of their pollution control systems.”
Penalty notices are just 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.