Sheffield waste firm fined for breach of environmental permit

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A recycling centre in Sheffield has been fined £9,000 and costs of £8,810 for handling excessive amounts of waste at the site in breach of an environmental permit.

M White Limited, which runs a waste recycling site on Worthing Road, Attercliffe, was prosecuted by the Environment Agency which said it had tried for three years to get the company to comply with its permit.

The firm’s director Mark White, aged 62, and his son James White, 37, both of Wood Lane, Stannington, were each sentenced to 120 hours of unpaid work.

They were found guilty of handling volumes of waste in excess of those permitted by their permit and failing to comply with an enforcement notice.

Syan Ventom, prosecuting, told Sheffield Magistrates’ Court the recycling firm’s licence allows a maximum of 200 tonnes of inert waste and 250 tonnes of household, commercial and industrial waste but audits and spot checks at the site repeatedly found there was too much.

The firm blamed the problems on equipment failures and staff issues.

The firm also said it had received a tax demand of £68,000, requiring it to continue taking in waste for the income it generated, despite being in breach of the permit.

Environment Agency officer Edd Betts said: “Waste transfer sites such as this one require an environmental permit which have limitations in place that are essential to protect the environment and prevent any harm to human health.

“The Environment Agency is keen to work with companies and give advice as far as possible to allow waste businesses to operate

“But in this case we have seen our advice ignored and an enforcement notice breached caused by non-compliance with the permit.

“We hope today’s result sends out a clear message that permits must be in place and complied with to protect local communities and we will act where necessary to ensure this happens.”