A BARANDUDA composting facility has been hit with a fine for emitting a stink.
Victoria’s Environment Protection Authority has slapped Ileowl Pty Ltd — which operates Greenchip Recycling — with a penalty infringement notice.
That equates to a $7042 fine for the incident, which occurred earlier this year.
EPA officers detected “an offensive odour” upwind of but also in the residential area of Killara on April 19.
In handing down the fine, the EPA noted how Ileowl had received several EPA remedial notices in the past.
The infringement is a stand-alone penalty and not related to two other actions involving Greenchip.
Wodonga Council has been a harsh critic in the past of odours coming from the plant.
Cr Rod Wangman expressed his concern in April about how the EPA could take action to prevent odours from processing — such as from “tannery residues, animal effluent and residues and grease trap effluent” — escaping the plant.
Greenchip’s two other actions — one involving the council, the other the EPA — are set down for the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal on August 29 and 30.
Wodonga Council business services director Trevor Ierino said these actions were quite separate and that it just so happened that VCAT had decided to have these set down for the same days.
“Back in November the EPA issued a pollution abatement notice against Greenchip, plus some in August and September,” Mr Ierino said.
“The one in November was appealed by Greenchip so the hearing, which has taken a long time and started being heard at the end of May, has been rescheduled for August 29 and 30.
“That’s still an appeal to a pollution abatement notice.”
Mr Ierino said separately, the council went to VCAT seeking an application for enforcement orders.
“What was the basis of that is that council alleges Greenchip was in breach of its planning permit,” he said.
“Our action is more general — ours is ‘you’re making a smell, the permit says not to make a smell in breach of your permit’.
“The EPA action is far more specific as they’ve got the technical expertise.”
It related to such technical aspects as how Greenchip accepted its products on site and how it administered that product.
Mr Ierino said the EPA and council could share evidence “but that’s where it might end”.
“When people complain about odours they’ll do so to us and also to the EPA and so we’ll both have records,” he said.