sheriff.courtAt the end of last week an Edinburgh firm was fined £4,000 in total at Edinburgh Sheriff Court after pleading guilty to breaching Waste Management Licence conditions relating to dust and waste storage at Eldin Industrial Estate in Midlothian.

The company, Caledonian Industrial Limited, then trading as Caleco Waste, pled guilty to failing to carry out water spraying of stockpiles containing dry, crushed and screened waste materials in order to prevent particulate emissions to air, and also having stockpiles of waste exceeding three metres in height.

Both these incidents were breaches of a Waste Management Licence held by the company. The matter was investigated by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) and reported to the Procurator Fiscal.

Since the site first obtained a Waste Management Licence in 2000 SEPA has received numerous complaints from members of the public relating to operations on site.

SEPA explained that it engaged with the company since the Waste Management Licence was issued in order to secure compliance, and this included taking appropriate enforcement action as required. SEPA also modified the Waste Management Licence, to insert more prescriptive conditions relating to the control of dust and litter from the site, in an attempt to reduce the environmental impact from operations at the site and tackle perceived management failures.

A change in company management at the end of 2011 reduced the number of dust complaints in relation to the site, however concerns remained in relation to management of the site.

Simone O’Dowd, SEPA’s investigating officer, said:

“Despite several lengthy attempts, using our enforcement tools, to bring the company into compliance Caledonian Industrial Limited has continued to disregard the conditions of the Waste Management Licence.

“The site is located in close proximity to a number of residential properties as well as other commercial units within the industrial estate.”