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Environment Protection Authority

Veolia fined $15,000 for Pollution Studies and Reduction Program delay

Media release: 5 September 2017

The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has issued Veolia Environmental Services with a $15,000 fine after the company failed to meet the submission deadline for a component of the Long-term Leachate Management Strategy for the Woodlawn Bioreactor near Tarago.

The Woodlawn Bioreactor is a key component of waste infrastructure but has a long history of odour and leachate issues.  To address these, the EPA negotiated with Veolia to commit to a Long-term Leachate Management Strategy which was formalised as a series of Pollution Studies and Pollution Reduction Programs attached to their environment protection licence. 

Part of the strategy required Veolia to engage a consultant to investigate and report on the suitability of using two specific dams by 30 November 2016. Veolia submitted the required report on 2 June 2017 - 184 days after the due date, a breach of Veolia’s environment protection licence.

EPA Acting Manager Regional Waste Compliance Steven James said the EPA would still look to hold Veolia to the December 2017 deadline for the commissioning of a new leachate treatment plant, a key component of the Long-term Leachate Management Strategy.

“These delays are unacceptable –but these investigations and reports are key in the long-term management of odour and leachate at the facility and such delays jeopardise the December 2017 deadline,” Mr James said.

“The fact is that the longer each step takes, the longer it will take for a leachate treatment plant to be commissioned. We will continue to work with Veolia to ensure it strives to meet its December deadline”. 

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: 05 September 2017