A man has been fined £8,800 for operating two illegal waste sites in Gloucestershire.
Sam Phelps, who ran ‘XP Wood Recycling’, pleaded guilty to two charges of deliberately operating illegal waste sites, which were a risk to the environment and a nuisance to the local community. Mr. Phelps was fined £400 for each offence and ordered to pay costs of £8,000 at Cheltenham Magistrates court yesterday (7 March 2016).
While on a site visit, an Environment Agency officer found a pile of shredded waste wood estimated to be at least four times the authorised amount. The nearby Severn Estuary, a Site of Special Scientific Interest, was at risk of pollution from the water run-off from this site.
A farmer from Somerset says contractors used by the Environment Agency have caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to his land - and he hasn't received any compensation.
James Hall's yard at Northmoor was used to store vehicles and building equipment during the flooding on the Levels. Now he's been told that the Environment Agency plans to use his land again.
A farmer from Somerset says he's been insulted by the Environment Agency after they threatened to bring cranes onto his land without his permission.
James Hall's yard at Northmoor was used by contractors during the flooding on the Somerset Levels causing around £8,500 worth of damage.
Now the Agency need to use the space again to remove pumps from a nearby river. But James says he can't afford any more disruption.
The Environment Agency says around a thousand homes on the edge of Bridgwater are now at risk as the flooding crisis in Somerset deepens. Around 150 homes in villages on the Somerset Levels are currently affected.
The Agency says it's building an earth bank at Northmoor about a mile from Bridgwater as part of efforts to protect the town.
There has been strong reaction to an article today by the chairman of the Environment Agency, Lord Smith, saying that difficult decisions about spending on flood defences will mean choosing between "front rooms or farmland".
Our Political Correspondent Bob Constantine says this sort of comment is not likely to go down well with people under water on the Somerset Levels. A question he posed to Pete Fox, an Environment Agency spokesman
Janice Peacey, a Community Ranger from Cheltenham Borough Council brings us the latest in the efforts to save struggling fish in Pittville Lake.
Thank goodness there isn't a hosepipe ban in Cheltenham where the Environment Agency hopes spraying fresh water into Pittville Lake will save some of its fish, which are dying in droves.
Staff have spent the night manning the pumps, trying to re-oxygenate the lake.
In the meantime, people and dogs are being warned to stay well away from the water for their own safety.
Thousands of fish have died in a lake in Cheltenham in what the Environment Agency has described as a mass suffocation.
Pittville Lake is part of the town's largest ornamental park.
People are now being warned to stay away from the water.
Katie Rowlett reports: