Farmer convicted of farm effluent pollution at Omagh Magistrates’ Court

Date published: 24 June 2024

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Mr David Kenwell (38), Killyliss Road, Fintona, pleaded guilty today and was fined £1,000 with a £15 Offenders Levy at Omagh Magistrates' Court for an offence in respect of Article 7(1)(a) of the Water (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 as amended.

The Court heard that on 2 August 2022, Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) Water Quality Inspectors (WQIs) received a report of a farm effluent entering an unnamed tributary of the Owenreagh River.  At the farm, the Inspectors discovered that an unlined sump had been constructed from permeable gravel and this construction was allowing silage effluent to escape and enter the waterway via a concrete pipe.  This incident was classified as of medium severity where 1.5km of waterway was impacted by this discharge of silage effluent.

A tripartite statutory sample was collected from the discharge pipe and analysed. The material represented by the sample contained poisonous, noxious or polluting matter which would have been potentially harmful to aquatic life in a 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.  
  2. All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office: pressoffice.group@daera-ni.gov.uk or telephone: 028 9016 3460.
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  4. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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