Farmer fined for polluting stream

A Northern Irish farmer has been fined £4,000 for polluting a local watercourse with slurry in County Down.

Ian McFarlane was sentenced at Newtownards Magistrates Court for the incident, which resulted in farm effluent being discharged to a stream near Helen’s Bay which discharges to Belfast Lough.

In September 2017, a water quality inspector, acting on behalf of the Northern Ireland Environment Agency, traced the pollution to McFarlane’s farm at Ballygrainey Road, Holywood. The inspector discovered a storm manhole in the yard had slurry flowing through it and an overflow tank downstream of the farm was full of slurry. The inspector also discovered sewage fungus in the open stream and at Craigdarragh Road, a distance of 1.6km downstream of the farm.

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