Northern Ireland

Corramore Construction fined over river pollution

Gortnaskey Road, Draperstown Image copyright Google
Image caption Officers were called to the Gortnaskey Road near Draperstown after a pollution report

A construction company has been fined for polluting a river in County Londonderry while building a green energy project.

Corramore Construction Ltd was fined £750 for causing pollution on the Altagoan River near Draperstown.

Inspectors found silage effluent being piped into the river from a site where an anaerobic digestion plant was being built.

The company pleaded guilty to the offence from March 2016.

Officers went to the Gortnaskey Road near Draperstown after a pollution report.

They found fungal growth in the river and recorded a strong agricultural odour from the water.

Harmful to fish

A pipe was discovered that was discharging a dark coloured liquid to the river.

Further examination found two other pipes also discharging effluent.

It had gathered at a construction site where the anaerobic digester plant was being built.

Samples of discharge were collected from three different points.

All were found to contain poisonous, noxious or polluting matter that was potentially harmful to fish.

Anaerobic digesters use organic material like slurry or silage, which are broken down in the sealed units to produce a biogas.

It can be burned to generate heat and power.