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Rescue Board in central Estonia called out in case of illegal waste burning

Estonian firetruck. Photo is illustrative.
Estonian firetruck. Photo is illustrative. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Rescue Board (Päästeamet) personnel were last week called out to a suspicious outdoor fire near the Lääne-Viru and Järva county line, regional daily Järvamaa teataja (JT) reports, which turned out to be a case of the illegal incineration of polluting waste.

Rescue Board personnel from the Aravete Brigade attending the scene at the village of Raudla, around 70 kilometers southeast of Tallinn, informed the Environmental Board (Keskkonnaamet) of the incident, while the authority's Järva County office said that although the indiscriminate burning of polluting waste is fortunately not as frequent as it was years ago, it does still occur putting the figure at around a dozen incidents per year in that region.

"The solution depends on each specific case, but the information about the incinerator is also forwarded to the local government, which checks the existence of organized waste transport contracts, if necessary, concludes the corresponding contracts and, in turn, explains the rules of good order and waste management," Janely Berg, manager of the Environmental Board's Järva office, said.

Even at home, only clean and untreated wood may not be burned in a regular fireplace and without permission and the special equipment required – fines for transgressors can be up to €1,200 for a private individual and as much as €400,000 in the case of a legal entity, ie. a company, JT reports.

In the Raudla case, a large hold had been dug and the waste, which included plastics, burned in it, not only an illegal act but one which can release harmful substances such as nitrogen oxides, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, hydrogen chloride, sulfur dioxide, and some heavy metals and dioxins.

The full JT article (in Estonian) is here.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

Source: Postimees

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