Company convicted at Londonderry Magistrates’ Court

Date published: 27 March 2024

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Lodge Renewables Ltd of Gortnaskey Road, Draperstown was convicted today at Londonderry Magistrates’ Court for a water pollution offence.

Lodge Renewables Ltd pleaded guilty and was fined £500 plus £15 Offenders Levy.  The waterway impacted was the Altagoan River.

Lodge Renewables Ltd was fined and charged under Article 7(1)(a) of the Water (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 as amended for the offence of making a polluting discharge to a waterway.

The Court heard that on 12 January 2021 Water Quality Inspectors (WQIs) responded to a report of water pollution affecting the Altagoan River downstream of Gortnaskey Road, Draperstown.  Grey fungus was observed on the bed of the waterway and an agricultural odour was detected from the water, upstream the waterway was clean.  The WQIs observed an active discharge of agricultural effluent with the appearance and smell of silage flowing and ponding along on the bank of the Altagoan River adjacent to the anaerobic digester at Gortnaskey Road, Draperstown.  An Inspector discovered a pipe discharging effluent from the embankment area.  A statutory sample of the silage effluent actively discharging from the pipe was collected in accordance with procedures.  Green tracing dye was added to a pipe at the rear of the yard, a short time later the dye was observed flowing across the riverbank and actively discharging to the Altagoan River.  

The sample was analysed and found to contain poisonous, noxious, or polluting matter which was potentially harmful to fish life in the receiving waterway. 

Anyone wishing to report a pollution incident can call the 24 hour Incident Hotline on: 0800 80 70 60.

 

Notes to editors: 

1.            It is an offence under the Water (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 (as amended by the Water and Sewerage Services (Northern Ireland) Order 2006) under Article 7(1)(a) to make a polluting discharge to a waterway, under Article 7(2) to make a discharge of trade or sewage effluent into a waterway and under Article 7(6) for contravening the conditions of a consent issued under Article 7A3(a). This list is not exhaustive. 

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