Maximum fines for illegal waste shipments

10th October 2011

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  • Waste ,
  • Disposal ,
  • Recycling ,
  • Environment agencies



Two waste management firms have been ordered to pay fines of £5,000 each after one mis-described waste and the other attempted to transport it illegally to India.

Waste carrier Williams Recycling, of Nuneaton, and Norwich-based waste paper recycling company M W White both pleaded guilty to waste offences at Norwich Magistrate’s Court after Environment Agency inspectors discovered an illegal shipment of waste destined for India in January last year.

The court heard that 10 containers, which had been labelled as “mixed paper” waste on transfer notes, were discovered to hold 225 tonnes of mixed rubbish containing food, nappies, plastic and tin cans.

Paul White, the managing director of M W White confirmed that his company had not made any checks on the waste, which had been collected from local authorities, businesses, schools and charities, to see whether it was eligible for export.

Meanwhile the director of Williams Recycling, Susan Williams, confirmed that staff had failed to examine the waste to confirm it was mixed paper before it was loaded into containers to be shipped overseas.

“Waste was not sorted or checked before it was loaded,” prosecutor Miriam Tordoff told the court. “Had a procedure been in place to check the waste before loading and transporting, these offences could have been avoided.”

Environment Agency officer Sam Brown warned that all waste companies, local authorities and businesses have a responsibility to check what happens to their waste.

“If waste is being exported from the UK strict rules apply and businesses exporting waste should make sure that they are followed,” she said.

For its failure to comply with Environmental Protection Act 1990, by not accurately describing the transferred waste in its documentation, M W White was fined £5,000, while Williams Recycling was fined the same amount for transporting mixed waste to India without prior written notification and consent under the European Waste Shipment Regulation (1013/2006).


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