A County Down business man pleaded guilty and was fined a total of £3,000, plus court costs of £25 and an Offenders Levy of £15 at Newtownards Magistrates’ Court today.
On 4 February 2015 Water Quality Inspectors acting on behalf of the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) inspected the Enler River at its confluence with the Ballystockart River and observed that it was grossly polluted. The Inspectors traced the source of the pollution to premises owned by Robert Martin Hamilton. It was observed that sludge had been spread on the fields and had run off into the waterway.
On 6 February 2015 an Inspector, acting on behalf of NIEA again observed pollution in the Enler River at its confluence with the Ballystockart River. The discharge was traced upstream to property and premises owned by Robert Martin Hamilton. A brown coloured liquid, believed to be vegetable processing waste water was observed flowing off the fields into the waterway. It was observed that the waterway above these premises was clear.
A sample taken on 6 February 2015 confirmed that the discharge contained high Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD), Total Ammonia and Suspended Solids content.
In excess of 2.5 kilometres of waterway was impacted by the discharges.
Anyone wishing to report a pollution incident can call the 24-hour Water Pollution Hotline on 0800 80 70 60.