Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Opotiki farmers fined for effluent discharges


Opotiki farmers fined for effluent discharges


3 December 2012

Ōpōtiki dairy farmers Riverlock Farms Limited, and directors Ian Brown and Geoffrey Brown, have been fined a total of $74,000 plus costs on charges brought by Bay of Plenty Regional Council of discharging contaminated underpass liquid to waterways in October 2011.

Following a two-day defended hearing in the Whakatāne District Court the defendants were also convicted and discharged on a charge of breaching an enforcement order imposed as part of a July 2011 sentencing for an earlier offence.

The defendants were charged with pumping underpass water containing contaminants directly into a roadside drain on 18 October 2011. The drain led to the Waioeka River via a tributary stream. The second discharge occurred when wastewater from a nearby effluent pond overflowed into the same drain. The third charge related to the company failing to comply with a Court order that they obtain a report about the farm’s contingency plans for effluent management.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council Operations, Monitoring and Regulation Committee Chairman Malcolm Whitaker said the level of the fine reflected the deliberateness of the discharges.

“One year earlier the defendants pleaded guilty to offences relating to two unauthorised discharges of effluent at the same property. At this week’s hearing the Court heard from the defence that they have one of the largest farming operations in the Bay of Plenty, milking about 2,500 cows on their farms,” he said.

“A conviction on the breach of this previous enforcement order was necessary as the need to comply with a Court ordered direction is imperative. The company has spent in excess of $330,000 on upgrading their effluent system on the farm which was reflected by the Council not seeking a fine for that particular offence.

“However the conviction for the wastewater offences sends out a very clear message that discharges of this nature are not acceptable, particularly on farming operations of this size. The Regional Council is very concerned that some dairy farmers running large herds are not paying enough attention to managing the farm’s effluent system properly, to the detriment of the environment. We are seeing cases where farms have expanded their operations without the subsequent investment in infrastructure upgrades.”

He said there were many resources available to farmers on effluent management through dairy farming organisations, such as Fonterra and DairyNZ.

Mr Whitaker commended the member of public who alerted the Regional Council to the October 2011 offences.

“The Council relies on the public reporting any pollution incidents that they witness, which are often received through the Pollution Hotline (0800-884-883)” he said.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Gaza And Burning The Israeli Flag

One of the selling points in New Zealand’s campaign for a temporary seat on the Security Council is that we have a pluckily independent voice to offer on international conflicts.

This image is not entirely self-delusional. When we did occupy a temporary UN Security Council seat in the 1990s, New Zealand was forthright about the need for the international community to actively respond to the Rwanda genocide. On April 14, 1994, New Zealand, Nigeria and the Czech Republic were the only nations to call for a forceful UN intervention to halt the killings. It was a proud moment in the diplomatic record of the Bolger government.

What then, is the current National government doing with respect to the slaughter in Gaza? More>>

 

Parliament Today:

TAIC Report: Urgent Recommendations After Melling Rail Accident

The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has made four urgent recommendations to KiwiRail following the accident two months ago (27 May) when a Matangi passenger train collided with a stop block at Melling Station, Lower Hutt. More>>

ALSO:

Red Tape: Local Regulations Go Under Microscope

The Government says it is accepting nearly all of the recommendations the Productivity Commission has made on ways to improve local regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Spending Questions: Claudette Hauiti To Step Aside At Election

National Party President Peter Goodfellow confirms that he has received notification from List MP Claudette Hauiti that she plans to step aside at the 20 September election. More>>

ALSO:

EPA: Board Of Inquiry Rejects Basin Flyover By Majority Of 3 To 1

The independent Board of Inquiry delegated to decide on the Basin Bridge Proposal has, by a majority decision (3 to 1), cancelled the Transport Agency’s Notice of Requirement and declined its resource consent applications for the construction, operation and maintenance of a flyover on State Highway 1 in Wellington City... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Non-Apology To Tania Billingsley

The refusal by Prime Minister John Key to issue a personal apology to Tania Billingsley has been accompanied by an array of excuses... Yesterday though, Key’s choice of words indicated that an apology was the last thing on his mind. More>>

ALSO:

Conventions: Winston Peters On The Nation

Winston Peters opens door to standing in East Coast Bays electorate, says it's an "exciting point" and he's thinking about it. "I’ve had a whole lot of people writing to me and calling up and saying ‘why don’t you have a go in East Coast Bays’." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news