A $152,000 fine imposed on a forestry company whose waste washed into a river should be a strong warning to the industry, says Gisborne District Council chief executive Nedine Thatcher Swann.
Japanese-owned company Juken New Zealand was fined yesterday in Gisborne District Court after a large amount of forestry waste from its operations washed into waterways and over land during flooding.
The damage cost millions to repair.
Ms Thatcher Swann said the prosecution sent a message that companies must carefully manage environmental risks.
However in court yesterday, the judge criticised the council, calling its lack of oversight and failure to inspect the company a "disgrace".