As November 5th approaches, it’s worth reporting that a County Down man has just been fined £900 for dumping tyres on bonfire.
Leonard Nicholson was found guilty of six charges brought under The Waste and Contaminated Land (Northern Ireland) Order 1997.
He was fined £150 on each charge at Newry Magistrates’ Court – amounting to £900 – and ordered to pay £31 court costs.
In September and October 2008, officials from the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA), along with officers from Newry and Mourne District Council, investigated Mr Nicholson, who is from Ballykinlar, in relation to the illegal disposal of tyres on a bonfire in Newry.
Last year Mayo County Council warned bonfire night revelers that burning old tyres is a major contributor to environmental pollution and can present health hazards.
The council’s Environment Awareness Office issued a warning that tyres contain many chemicals which produce toxic fumes when they are burned.
The application of chemicals in the manufacturing process makes them dangerous when they are burning because they release harmful by-products and toxic waste.
These fumes are then emitted into the air and breathed in by an unsuspecting public.
They also contaminate the land around the fire and the back-gardens over which the smoke passes.
Once released, these toxins will persist for a long time in the environment and can be absorbed by vegetables and produce grown in gardens, which could make then unhealthy to eat.
Denna Bowman, Head Office