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Lincoln/Smithville Company and Operator fined $6,000 for Ontario Water Resources Act Violations

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Lincoln/Smithville Company and Operator fined $6,000 for Ontario Water Resources Act Violations

St. Catharines - Meat processing plant 2066888 Ontario Ltd. operating as Sanabil Halal Meat Farm and Ashfaq W. Siddiqi were convicted of six offences each and received six suspended sentences and a fine of $6,000 for discharging abattoir waste water into a creek, failing to comply with a Provincial Officer's Order in relation to an on-site sewage lagoon, and operating a sewage works without ministry approval, contrary to the Ontario Water Resources Act (OWRA).

2066888 Ontario Ltd. operating as Sanabil Halal Meat Farm is an abattoir/meat processing plant located on Spring Creek Road in Smithville.

Ashfaq W. Siddiqi is the on-site day to day operator of the company.

This site processes animals, including draining of blood from the animal which enters the waste water process.

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has a meat inspector present on each day of processing in order to ensure that all animals processed are fit for human consumption.

In July 2012, OMAFRA advised the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change that an onsite lagoon appeared to be used in the collection of animal processed waste water due to the red colour of the water.

In July 2012 and November of 2012, ministry staff attended the site and met with Mr. Siddiqi who was processing animals.

The lagoon was filled to capacity and liquid was entering the lagoon from an underground pipe.

Ministry staff observed effluent flowing out of the lagoon through an overflow pipe downhill, where it entered into Spring Creek.

Water samples collected by the ministry concluded that the discharge of the lagoon waste water was sufficient to impair the quality of water in Spring Creek.

Neither the company nor Mr. Siddiqi notified the ministry of this overflow and neither was issued ministry approval to operate a site sewage works.

On November 21, 2012, the ministry issued an order to the company and Mr. Siddiqi requiring them to retain the services of a qualified professional with experience in sewage management to either, prepare an application for a ministry's approval to operate the sewage lagoon, or prepare a written plan on how the effluent in the lagoon will be disposed of and the lagoon decommissioned for storing sewage, by March 31, 2013.

On December 6, 2013, the services of a qualified professional in sewage management were retained to comply with the order.

On January 8, 2014, an amended order was issued with a compliance start date of January 8, 2014 and end date of July 31, 2014.

On May 14, 2014, the ministry observed that the height of the lagoon contents completely covered the discharge drain and no trench had been excavated to divert water from entering the lagoon as required by the order.

The matter was referred to the Ministry's Investigations and Enforcement Branch and following an investigation charges were laid.

On September 15, 2016, 2066888 Ontario Ltd. and Ashfaq W. Siddiqi were convicted of six offences each. On March 15, 2017 2066888 Ontario Ltd. received six suspended sentences and Mr. Siddiqi was fined a total of $6,000 plus a victim fine surcharge of $750 and was given 12 months to pay the fine.

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