Illegal burning costs builder
A self-employed builder who illegally burnt waste at Barnetby le Wold has been fined £2,000 and ordered to pay a contribution to Environment Agency costs of £2,500 after pleading guilty to two offences of burning waste
The Environment Agency received reports that fires had been lit and that waste was being taken to the Old Maltings site off Kings Road which is owned by the defendant. Mrs Anne-Lise McDonald, prosecuting for the Environment Agency, told the court that during a visit on 27 October 2009 officers saw various materials on site including bricks and rubble from the demolition of the Old Maltings, which Rowbottom had carried out himself. There was also evidence of burning.
Throughout the site there were piles of materials, including perished tyres, empty gas bottles, oil containers, paint containers, old electrical items including a television, ovens, washing machines, fridges, electrical wire, an old boiler, old sinks and baths. An old caravan was also noted which contained numerous old radiators, metal, plastic, doors, windows, wood and rubble.
Officers wrote to Rowbottom asking that the site be cleared and telling him that it was an offence to burn waste without a permit. The following July he was filmed burning waste on two separate days.
Rowbottom, a self-employed builder, told Agency investigators that he only burned junk mail there a couple of times a year and occasionally other things that might by lying around at the same time. He said he had demolished the Old Maltings and planned to build houses there.
Mr Thompson, acting for Rowbottom told the court that the defendant had now cleared the site and is aware that he should not have burned the waste.
Sentencing, District Judge Curtis said the offences were serious and needed to be dealt with in a manner which would deter others. He said that Rowbottom’s actions were deliberate as the Agency had informed him that what he was doing was illegal – but he ignored the advice.
After the hearing Environment Agency officer Ray Taylor said:
“This case sends a clear message that all waste should be handled properly and recycled or disposed of in an appropriate manner and that illegal burning of waste as a cheap disposal option is not acceptable”.