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Farm Owner/Operator fined $5,000 for Ontario Water Resources Act Violation

Court Bulletin

Farm Owner/Operator fined $5,000 for Ontario Water Resources Act Violation

Convicted - Jason Tellier

Court Location - Blemheim

Description of Offence - The conviction relates to permitting the discharge of a material into a water course that may impair the quality of the water.

Date of Offence - During the period on or about September 6, 2016

Date of Conviction - September 6, 2018

Penalty Imposed - Jason Tellier was convicted of one violation under the Ontario Water Resources Act and was fined $5,000 plus a victim fine surcharge of $1,250 with 60 days to pay.

Background -  

  • Jason Tellier owns and operates a farm in Chatham-Kent, which grows corn.
  • Alongside the farm runs the Stevenson-Tellier Drain, which connects to several other drains that lead to the Thames River.
  • On September 6, 2016, there was a discharge of corn silage seepage from the farm into the Stevenson-Tellier Drain. In response, ministry staff attended the site and observed discharge exiting the farm property and entering the drain. 
  • Water samples confirmed that the Stevenson-Tellier Drain, the Finn & Cooper Drain and the Raleigh Plains Drain all contained the discharge within the watercourses.
  • Further analysis indicted that the discharge had a very high oxygen demand which led to very low oxygen concentrations in the drains, insufficient to sustain most aquatic life, thereby impairing the quality of water.
  • The ministry's Investigations and Enforcement Branch investigated and laid charges resulting in one conviction.

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Environment and Energy