Clean up planned for PFAS contaminated Truegain site Rutherford

Clean up planned for PFAS contaminated Truegain site Rutherford TweetFacebook Hazmat crews investigate the Rutherford site in 2017Pictures: Perry Duffin and Nick BielbyThe EPA will oversee the clean-up process at the PFAS contaminated Truegain waste oil processing facility at Rutherford.

Truegain’s Environment Protection Licence was suspended by the EPA in 2016, following poor environmental performance.

The site still has storage of waste oil and other chemicals and there is a high-level of PFAS contamination in liquid waste across the site, but thecompany has since gone intoliquidation.

“Protecting the community and the environment is a priority,”NSW Environment Minister Gabrielle Uptonsaid.

“The EPA is working closely with the formerTruegainowners and Maitland City Council to ensure the site is suitably cleaned up and does not present a risk of discharge of contamination into the nearby Stony Creek, particularly after heavy rain.”

The Government is undertaking a Selective Tender process so an experienced contractor can manage the unique nature of the premises.

The tender closes on June 14, 2018.

EPA Acting Chair and CEO Anissa Levy said the EPA was also investigating other potential sources of PFAS contamination in the Stony Creek catchment, including a number of premises within Rutherford Industrial Estate.

“The NSW Government has adopted a precautionary approach to managing PFAS because these substances take a long time to break down in humans and the environment”, she said.

“Until more information becomes available, precautionary advice to minimise exposure to PFAS will remain in place in NSW.

“As such we are reminding residents to avoid using water from Stony Creek and Swamp Creek waterways, downstream of the Rutherford Industrial Estate, for domestic or livestock use.

“The EPA is again contacting residents to ensure they are aware of this. Water from the town supply or rainwater tanks is safe to use.”

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