Diesel fuel and oil sludge flooded into homes and yards in Broadwater, northern NSW, during the unprecedented March floods. We have been assisting the community and working closely with residents to test and clean-up their properties.
EPA and GHD staff met with affected residents during the week of 16 -23 May 2022 to work through individual sampling results and negotiate specific remedial action plans for each property.
Of the 17 properties where exceedances were detected, property owners have elected to use a range of remedial strategies including
- do nothing and enable natural degradation processes to take place.
- apply a bioremediation accelerator product known as S200 OilGone. S200 OilGone is safe to use. It is non-toxic, non-corrosive, non-flammable and enhances the growth of indigenous hydrocarbon eating bacteria to convert any fuel contamination in the soil to CO2 and water.
- remove and replace soils and returf.
- re-test soils in 3 months.
These remedial works are now complete across all properties with OilGone applied, soils replaced and new turf applied.
Follow up sampling of the area where OilGone has been applied will be conducted in approximately 3 months to confirm that the areas are clean.
Soil sampling to identify any residual contamination within the affected public areas of Broadwater has also been completed. This testing has revealed one area where further testing will be undertaken to confirm the nature and extent of the contamination, in all other areas follow up testing in three months time is the only follow up required.
Further contamination assessment has also been conducted in the vicinity of Sunrise Caravan Park, with the results indicating that some remedial works are required in this area. The exact nature of these works are currently being negotiated.
To date, works have cost approximately $400,000 with funds being approved under the emergency procurement provisions to protect human health and environmental health during a declared natural disaster event.
We have not prohibited people from returning to their homes in Broadwater. To the contrary the cleaning works are being undertaken to help residents.