Richard Nelson, Senior Manager for the Environmental Management Sub-division at NEPA
The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) has issued an enforcement notice on mining company Windalco following an effluent overflow at its Ewarton Plant in St. Catherine last month.
The overflow contaminated several waterways in St. Catherine, including the Rio Cobre.
The notice, which was issued on Tuesday, orders Windalco to increase its capacity to store industrial effluent to prevent discharge or spillage into the environment. The company has also been given three months to dredge the current holding ponds.
Richard Nelson, Senior Manager for the Environmental Management Sub-division at NEPA, said effluent holding ponds at the plant may have exceeded their capacity due to climate change.
He said the effluent contains a caustic chemical that poses a risk to public health and natural resources.
NEPA has also instructed Windalco to prepare a spillage mitigation plan and submit it to the National Resources Conservation Authority within thirty days of the date of the enforcement notice.