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LEICESTER – It is decades since the UK had a major problem with pollution from textile dyeing, but recent reports suggests an issue many assumed we had exported to Asia is rearing its again. UK government officials have announced that Leicester based business Euro Dyers Ltd has been ordered to pay £59,259 after operating an illegal textile dye house in a residential area. The business has been ordered to pay a fine of £40,000 and costs of £19,084 alongside a £175 victim surcharge. Leicester has become the UK’s key textile hub and provides a sourcing spot for ultra-fast fashion, near-sourcing brands such as Boohoo and Missguided.

Euro dyers had apparently been told on several occasions that it needed an environmental permit to operate. Any UK dyehouse whose site’s capacity is above the threshold of 10 tonnes per day requires a permit. Despite warnings from Environment Agency staff which encouraged and tried to assist it with an application, the business never successfully applied for a permit, which would have introduced conditions to manage odour, regulate emissions to air and sewer, the generation of waste, noise pollution and the prevention of accidents.

The latter would have been especially important as government officials claim inspections found flammable liquids stored on top of oxidising chemicals and chemicals stored with no containment to control leaks. Environment Agency officers also found waste water leaking into a roadside drain outside.

Speaking after the ruling, an Environment Agency officer involved with the investigation said: “Despite several attempts to assist the company and after numerous warnings, this company still refused to be brought into the permitting regime., We hope that this fine will serve as a warning to them and others in the industry that there are strong penalties if they flout the law.

“This is great news to the residents who live nearby, the environment and to competitors who do the right thing and comply with the law.

“We are committed to working with the industry to ensure they operate legally. However, we will take enforcement action where a company refuses to comply. We make sure the impacts from these sites are controlled in accordance with a permit and that all companies in the industry are operating on a level playing field.”

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