Bartter fined for discharging high-strength effluent
Beresfield poultry processing facility Bartter Enterprises Pty Limited has been fined $15,000 by the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) for allegedly discharging high-strength effluent into Woodberry Swamp.
The $15,000 fine is the largest the EPA can issue under its legislation.
EPA Director Metro Operations David Gathercole said Bartter was permitted to release waste water only within strict conditions.
“Under its licence, Bartter Enterprises is allowed to release a controlled amount of treated waste water,” Mr Gathercole said.
“However, testing indicated that effluent treatment at the premises was inadequate resulting in a high concentration of chemical compounds being discharged into the swamp. This included elevated levels of nitrogen and phosphorus.”
High-strength effluent can disrupt natural ecosystems and lead to rapid growth of weeds and algae, which can have a negative impact on delicate aquatic life.
Woodberry Swamp is a recognised wetland under the Coastal Management State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) 2018.
Mr Gathercole said the EPA had put Bartter Enterprises on notice to take action to prevent water pollution.
“By issuing this penalty notice and enforcing a number of immediate, medium and long-term actions – including modifying the on-site wastewater treatment plant – the EPA is emphasising the importance of Bartter’s responsibility to comply with the law, and protect the local sensitive environment. “
For more information about the EPA’s regulatory tools, see the EPA Compliance Policy at www.epa.nsw.gov.au/legislation/prosguid.htm