A local dairy company has been fined more than $5,000 over a dozen dead cattle left out in the open on its property at Simpson, in southwest Victoria.
EPA issued Sunday Ridge Dairies Pty Ltd with a $5,452 fine for failing to comply with a requirement of an EPA remedial notice.
EPA Southwest Regional Manager Carolyn Francis says dead livestock can create a hazard to people’s health and the environment if disposal is not done properly.
“Decaying animal carcases can spread disease and contaminate the land and nearby waterways, which affects the community at large and especially neighbouring farms,” Ms Francis said.
“In this case, EPA officers found 12 dead stock that had been left unburied and were in varying states of decomposition,” she said.
EPA officers had already issued the company with a remedial notice requiring that the dead stock be removed for disposal or properly buried in accordance with EPA’s guidelines.
“The General Environmental Duty that is part of the new Environment Protection Act 2017 requires every Victorian to take all reasonable actions to minimise any risk of harm to the environment and human health from their activities,” Ms Francis said.
“The fact that the dead stock had been left unburied, some of them for a considerable amount of time, was not only a breach of that duty and a hazard to the environment, but something any landholder downstream would not appreciate,” she said.
“Most farms have the equipment to do the job, there’s advice on the EPA website and there are plenty of contractors who will take dead stock away or bury them if needed.”
The inspection took place on 2 April 2022, on a property on Sunday Ridge Rd, Simpson.
Under the Environment Protection Act 2017 and the Infringements Act 2006, the operator has the right to have the infringement notice reviewed or be considered by a court.
Members of the public can report pollution by calling EPA’s 24-hour hotline on 1300 EPA VIC (1300 372 842) or providing details online at epa.vic.gov.au/report-pollution/reporting-pollution