Farm Ireland

Thursday 22 February 2018

Four agri businesses warned to clean up their acts by EPA

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Ciaran Moran

Ciaran Moran

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has warned the operators of four agri business to clean up their acts or face further sanctions.

The EPA names five sites that are on its National Priority Site list for enforcement, which means that they are targeted by the EPA for further enforcement action.

The five sites include four agri businesses: Rosderra Meats, Edenderry; Tipperary Co-operative Creamery, Tipperary town; Arrow Group (which operates as a subsidiary of the Queally Group and owns subsidiaries including Dawn Farms); and saw mill T&J Standish, Roscrea.

They represent less than 1pc of all EPA licensed sites, but account for 8pc all site inspections completed so far this year and three of the five account for more than half of all complaints received.

The EPA found that the highest level of non-compliance were facilities in the Food & Drink sector.

The warnings are part of a new EPA has launched enforcement initiative to drive further environmental compliance at industrial and waste facilities.

Licensed facilities with the poorest compliance status are identified as National Priority Sites for enforcement using a new system developed by the EPA. 

Points are allocated to each site based on compliance data such as complaints, incidents and non-compliances over the previous six months. 

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Commenting on the National Priority Sites system, Gerard O’Leary, Director of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Enforcement, said a small number of sites have significant compliance issues and it considers them to be National Priority Sites for enforcement. 

"The EPA will escalate enforcement action against companies, and their directors, if necessary, if compliance does not improve.”

Three of the top five complained against licensees in 2015 remain in the Top 5 in 2016 and these are Arrow Group, Ballynagran Residual Landfill and Nutricia Infant Nutrician Ltd.

Arrow Group in Kildare had 114 complaints from the general public and was inspected 19 times by the EPA.

Nutricia Infant Formula in Cork had 61 complaints and was fined €34,182 in 2016 by the EPA, while Rosderra Meats was fined €9,085 in 2016.

Complaints from members of the public who feel that the operators of licensed sites are not fulfilling their responsibilities are an important component of the performance related information available to the EPA.

Tipperary Co-operative Creamery Ltd

The site has compliance issues with how waste water and run-off from the site is being managed, resulting in a potential risk to the River Ara.

Arrow Group, Naas

Odour emissions from the facility are leading to a significant level of complaints from a number of local residents. The EPA is also investigating noise complaints.

Rosderra Irish Meats, Edenderry

Noise emissions from the facility are leading to a significant level of complaints. The EPA is also investigating odour complaints.

T & J Standish Ltd, Roscrea

The site has soil and groundwater contamination due to the use of timber treatment preservative in the past. Compliance issues relate to the failure of the company to manage the remediation system and to provide for the clean-up costs. 

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