Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) continues to enforce strong regulatory action on Coolaroo company, Glass Recovery Services.
EPA officers are very regularly inspecting the site to hold Glass Recovery Services to account against the Victorian Waste Management Policy and since early September have taken the additional step of installing 24/7 security.
EPA has laid 14 charges against the company and its sole director for notice contraventions and breaches of the Victorian Waste Management Policy. EPA has also issued notices that require it to cease accepting all waste, to take action to comply with the Victorian Waste Management Policy and to monitor any hotspots within its stockpiles to reduce the risk of a fire occurring.
EPA has found that a black substance that entered Merlynston Creek on 21 October 2019 and flowed into Jack Roper Reserve originated from the Glass Recovery Services site. EPA has confirmed it was leachate, which has seen signs put up advising the community to stay away from the waterways due to health concerns caused by the spill.
An investigation into the spill will determine what compliance and enforcement action EPA will take in relation to the pollution of the local waterway. EPA expects to take compliance and enforcement action within weeks.
The 14 charges previously laid allege the company and the director breached the company’s licence by allowing waste to be discharged, emitted or deposited outside its Maffra St, Coolaroo property on 12 October 2018, 21 February 2019, 28 and 29 March 2019 and 1 April 2019.
The charges also allege Glass Recovery Services and the director contravened the company’s licence by failing to ensure waste at the premises didn’t burn on 29 March 2019.
In addition, Glass Recovery Services and the director have each been charged with two counts of failing to comply with a notice requiring the removal of any combustible and recyclable waste material stored outdoors, most recently on 6 September.
The maximum penalty for a licence contravention is $386,856.