£45,000 fine is latest result in NRW bid to tackle water pollution

A recent court case against GP Biotec Ltd limited has resulted in a fine of £45,320 for illegal discharges to surface and groundwater, marking the latest success in Natural Resources Wales’ (NRW) efforts to tackle pollution.

GP Biotec Ltd polluted a 5Km stretch of the River Llynfi near Talgarth as well as a private drinking water supply.

The problem was caused by spreading organic matter at inappropriate rates and during unsuitable weather conditions.

These activities caused nutrient levels to build up and enter the river and groundwater supply after heavy rain which caused a reduction in water quality and the number of invertebrates in the river.

GP Biotec Ltd pleaded guilty and were fined £16,320 for the offences as well as £29,000 towards NRW costs.

This prosecution is the most recent result in a nationwide plan to combat river and agricultural pollution.

As well as prosecuting where necessary, NRW is working with a wide range of partners to combat pollution before it happens by advising landowners on sustainable land management techniques.

Together with Farming Connect and a number of other partners, NRW hopes to communicate the advantages of good land management including the financial and resource benefits that come with it.

As part of this ongoing project, NRW and Farming Connect will also be targeting 25 river catchments across Wales to improve those land management practices affecting water quality.

Chris Rees, Natural Resource Management Team Leader for NRW, said:

“Protecting Wales’ environment is fundamental to what we do. We work to prevent pollution occurring and offer advice and guidance on best practice.

“We undertook a comprehensive land spreading audit following the pollution on the Llynfi which resulted in several recommendations, which were acted upon promptly by GP Biotec Ltd.

“We are continuing to work with GP Biotec Ltd, with technical advice provided by Farming Connect.

“If a pollutant is at risk of entering a stream or river, this should be reported straight away to our 24-hour incident hotline on 0300 065 3000.

“Staff are always on hand to give advice, so that we can work together with land managers and contractors to respond to a problem. The sooner a problem is reported, the less damage it is likely to cause.”

For more information on pollution prevention work, visit www.naturalresources.wales and www.businesswales.gov.wales/farmingconnect/

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