Healthy Environment, Healthy Community, Healthy Business

Environment Protection Authority

EPA fines company with no licence $30,000

Media release: 31 July 2017

The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has fined Air Liquide Australia Limited $30,000 for carrying out chemical production and storage activities at its Kooragang and Banksmeadow facilities without holding an environment protection licence.

EPA Director Hunter, Karen Marler, said the EPA fined the company after it became aware that it was undertaking the activities involving dangerous goods at both premises.

“The Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 requires premises carrying out certain activities to hold an environment protection licence. This includes any business producing dangerous goods over 1,000 tonnes per year. It also includes companies that store chemicals above specified thresholds.

“Licences are important tools that help ensure environmental regulation for industries that have potential to impact on the health of the community and environment,” Ms Marler said.

Air Liquide Australia was processing, storing and then distributing carbon dioxide at its Kooragang premises which it had received from Orica’s Ammonium Nitrate Production facility. Carbon dioxide is listed as dangerous goods.

At its Banksmeadow facility, the company produces and stores liquefied oxygen, nitrogen, argon and carbon dioxide, all of which are classified as dangerous goods.  

Ms Marler said Air Liquid Australia holds an environment protection licence for other premises and should have been aware of the need for a licence for these activities.

“The EPA has issued the company with two fines of $15,000 for carrying out activities without a licence at each facility.”

The company has since applied for environment protection licences for each facility. The EPA has issued the company with a licence for its Kooragang operations. The licence application for its Banksmeadow operation is currently being assessed.

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 http://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/legislation/prosguid.htm.

Contact: Public Affairs

Page last updated: 31 July 2017