The operators of the Ravenhall landfill have been fined nearly $8000 for spilling waste over more than twice the area they were licensed for.
Environment Protection Authority Victoria used aerial images taken by a drone to monitor the Ravenhall site, as well as others around the state, in a blitz on licence breaches.
Cleanaway subsidiary Landfill Operations Pty Ltd, was issued an EPA infringement notice this month.
Landfill Operation’s licence had a tipping face limit (the area where waste can be located) of 1800 square metres but aerial images found that waste was filling more than double that area at the Christies Road site.
EPA chief executive Nial Finegan said licence holders are expected to regularly monitor and ensure their own compliance or face fines.
“Landfill sites can be a challenge because of their size or remoteness,” Mr Finegan said.
“Gaining access and then undertaking on-site measurements to ensure compliance using traditional methods can be time and resource consuming.
“By using different technologies such as drones, aerial images and satellites we are sending a message that we are watching and no site in Victoria is beyond our gaze.”
He said aircraft imaging at a specific point in time ensured highly accurate measurements.
Mr Finegan said Landfill Operations had dramatically exceeded their tipping area and was fined $7929.
“EPA has the technology to observe, detect and regulate without the need to conduct on-the-ground compliance activities,” he said.
“Aerial photography has been very successful in cases involving illegal dumping and EPA is also investigating the use of the satellite to help monitor sites and catch offenders.”