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Environment Protection Authority

EPA fines Mount Thorley blasting company after diesel leak

Media release: 6 July 2017

The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has fined Downer EDI Mining $15,000 after poor maintenance led to a diesel leak at the blasting company’s Mount Thorley facility.

The EPA visited the Downer EDI Mining Blasting Services site on 20 June as part of a suite of routine inspections of explosive manufacturers in the Singleton local government area.

During the inspection, EPA officers found that a diesel bund valve was buried in the soil causing a small amount of diesel to leak out. EPA officers further determined it was likely that a number of spills had occurred as a result of the valve being buried.

The EPA officers also noted poor chemical storage that had the potential for soil contamination, and inadequate stormwater diversions.

As well as the fine, the EPA is working on a pollution reduction program with Downer to improve environmental outcomes on the premises.

EPA Director Hunter Karen Marler said the EPA expects chemical storage facilities to maintain all equipment in a proper manner because of the heightened risk that these facilities can pose to human health and the environment.

“The EPA expects a high standard when it comes to storing and handling fuels and other chemicals,” Ms Marler said.

“While the fine is appropriate for this matter, just as important will be the action that Downer takes to ensure that it improves its environmental management to avoid similar problems in the future.”

Penalty notices are one of a number of tools the EPA can use to achieve environmental compliance including formal warnings, official cautions, licence conditions, notices and directions and prosecutions. For more information about the EPA’s regulatory tools, see the EPA Compliance Policy at http://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/legislation/prosguid.htm


Contact: EPA Public Affairs

Page last updated: 06 July 2017