The New South Wales branch of the Environment Protection Authority has fined a contractor for allegedly accepting and storing asbestos-containing waste at a contaminated soil treatment facility in Cootamundra.
EESI Contracting were permitted to receive contaminated soils and treat the material to reduce contaminant, to re-use the soil off-site under conditions.
The EPA Executive Director of Regulatory Operations, Carmen Dwyer, explained that EESI received asbestos-contaminated soil rather than material that was appropriate for recycling.
“Samples taken by EPA officers indicated this waste contained asbestos, which the premises is not permitted to accept,” Ms Dwyer said
“The appropriate transport and disposal of asbestos is very important to avoid risk to the community and the environment.”
After being contacted by the EPA, EESI took appropriate action to minimise air-borne movement and cross-contamination. The asbestos-containing material was removed to a facility that could legally receive asbestos-contaminated waste.
In addition to the penalty, EESI was issued an official caution for using treated soil to form an embankment against legislative requirements and also exceeding their on-site soil volume limit as per their license.