A group opposing the sale of spring water from a Uki bore to a multi-national beverage company claims the existing bore is within 500 metres of an old contaminated cattle dip site.
Former Wran government minister Jack Hallam is seeking approval for the deal, which would see him extract 24 megalitres of water a year from the bore on his Rowlands Creek Road property to sell to the bottling plant.
Just two weeks ago the group Tweed Water Alliance told Echonetdaily that Agent Orange used to be stored in a shed directly adjacent to Mr Hallam’s bore.
The group says this new information ‘raises a whole new range of chemical risks.’
Spokesperson Trevor White said it ‘once again calls into question the quality of information provided by the former agriculture minister in support of his development application.’
‘Mr Hallam has failed to inform the council of the contaminated site only 350 metres from his bore.’
According to NSW Water, bores within 500 metres of dip sites are at risk of contamination from highly toxic and persistent chemicals such as arsenic and DDT.
Cattle dips are so toxic that a register is kept of their locations by the Department of Primary Industries.
‘Surely as a former minister for agriculture Mr Hallam knows how serious the presence of a contaminated dip site can be,’ Mr White said.
‘There is no doubt he is aware of the dip site. It is just down the road from his property and all the dip fencing is still in place.
‘Mr Hallam’s failure to notify the council regarding the cattle dip in his development application once again shows the lack of due diligence that has gone into his application.
‘The Tweed Water Alliance is calling on the council to ensure that proper hydrological mapping is done so that the risks of the cattle dip site are understood and contamination prevented.’
A Tweed Shire Council spokesperson previously told Echonetdaily, ‘Council is not aware of any specific request for a contamination report unless it has been raised in the public submissions which have not been fully assessed at this point.’
‘As part of the ongoing council assessment of the DA, council will be requesting more detail on water testing,’ the spokesperson said.