An Invermay man has been fined $10,000 for allowing industrial waste to be dumped in the Nerrina Historic Area, north of Ballarat.
EPA Victoria told Ballarat Magistrate’s Court hobby farmer Stephen Martin allowed 2,400 cubic metres of soil mixed with construction and demolition waste to be dumped on Glen Park farmland leased from Ballarat City Council
He pleaded guilty to 11 charges of permitting industrial waste to be dumped at a premises that was not licensed to accept it, and one charge of contravening a clean-up notice from EPA.
The court denied an application to order Martin to remove all industrial waste from the site, but he is to continue engagement with Parks Victoria and EPA to fund and achieve sensible remediation of the land. Martin was also ordered to pay EPA’s legal costs of $3,408.
An investigation by EPA’s Environmental Crime Branch between April 2019 and November 2020 and covert surveillance by DELWP in February 2020, following reports from members of the public, led to the charges and eventual fine.
In January 2021, EPA served a Clean-Up Notice on Martin requiring the removal of all the industrial waste to a properly licensed facility by 31 May 2021, but he failed to comply.
Members of the public can report pollution by calling EPA’s 24-hour hotline on 1300 372 842 or providing details online at www.epa.vic.gov.au/report-pollution/reporting-pollution