Photo: Ministry of the Environment
Unauthorized sewage treatment system
A Kelowna company is set to be fined after being found guilty of violating provincial environmental management law.
In a recent inspection report posted online, the Department of the Environment says Sandhers Fruit Packers on Old Vernon Road breached section 6.2 of the Act during an on-site inspection on November 15, 2021.
Section 6.2 states, “Subject to subsection (5), a person shall not introduce or cause or permit the introduction of waste into the environment in the course of carrying on any prescribed industry, trade or business .”
According to the notice, Sandhers introduced waste from a prescribed industry, trade or business into the environment without permission during the inspection.
The company was also found discharging sewage into a failing septic tank and an unlined lagoon while operating with permission under the law in three previous inspections dating back to 2017. Letters from Warnings for this particular violation were sent to Sandhers on August 15, 2017 and August 15, 2017. 16,2019.
The findings of the report indicate that an application on behalf of Sandhers Fruit Packers was submitted to the ministry seeking clearance to discharge the facility in February 2018.
The preliminary application package has been approved, however, the ministry says a final application has not been received by the July 2021 deadline.
The department said a second company working on behalf of Sandhers said a final application package would not be available.
On-site inspectors were advised that the facility would be expanded and an area in the southwest corner of the property would be used for a new disposal field.
In addition to a fine, which is expected to be issued in the coming weeks, Sandhers has also been ordered to either cease discharging into the environment or obtain a discharge permit under the Environmental Management Act.
Sandhers Fruit Packers officials did not respond to Castanet’s requests for comment.