developer fined over asbestos dump

A landowner who buried asbestos and rubble at a Somerset farm has been fined for breaking hazardous waste rules.

Michael James of Allerford Farm, Norton Fitzwarren, Taunton was ordered to pay £2,334 in fines and costs after the Environment Agency took him to court for the illegal waste disposal, which took place last summer.

Taunton magistrates heard how during conversion of farm buildings James had built up over 250 tonnes of construction and demolition waste.

This was made up of concrete slabs and blocks, fibre cement cladding material and asbestos.

Rather than dispose of the waste legitimately, James hired a contractor to dig a pit and bury it at the farm.

Michael Dyer for the Environment Agency said: 'If the defendant had taken the trouble to segregate the concrete rubble from the hazardous waste it would have only cost around £1,000 to legitimately dispose of the relatively small amount of asbestos.

"Mixing and burying the various wastes has created a much larger potential clean-up bill."

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