A recycling firm has been fined £18,000 after admitting a charge relating to the illegal storage of waste.
Eastside 2000 Limited (E2L) was ordered to pay £7,732.75 in costs and a £120 victim surcharge at Hereford Magistrates’ Court.
The Environment Agency (EA) said it began investigating the company after becoming aware that it was storing waste at a site off Fordshill Road in Hereford, above, without a permit.
E2L did hold an environmental permit for operations on land next to the site but failed to remove the waste illegally stored following EA instructions.
After the case, the EA officer in charge of the investigation said: “For over two years E2L did not take the EA’s continuous interventions seriously. Instead they continued to deposit fresh waste on the site which left prosecution the only possible course of action.”
The agency became aware of the illegal storage of waste in June 2012, and instructed the company to remove the waste and cease operating in this area until the correct permits had been obtained.
The company had previously submitted a planning application to develop a waste washing facility at the site, so the EA agreed to put further enforcement action on hold pending its outcome.
In March 2013, Herefordshire Council informed the EA that the application had been refused, so the agency reinstated the enforcement action and told E2L to propose a timetable for removal of the waste.
The company said all waste would be removed by January 2014 but the EA found 12,000 tonnes on-site after the deadline. By August 2014, half of the waste had been removed from the site.
The charge was brought by the EA contrary to regulations 12(1)(a) and 38(1)(a) of the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2010 1990.
In mitigation, the court was told that the company had pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.