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Byron Shire
March 5, 2021

Byron wastewater clear of COVID on December 30

Latest News

Nimbin medicinal cannabis event, March 27

Two experienced medical cannabis doctors and a retired magistrate who is passionate about changing the drug driving rules will take part in the MEDICAN gathering in Nimbin.

Other News

Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: Dear Brittany

We watched you. We watched you break the silence. We heard the truth shatter like a glass hitting the tiles.

Letting go

Mary McMorrow, Mullumbimby I respect the parents forgiving the drunk driver who killed their four children (one a cousin) as...

Coal scuttle

Alan Veacock, Cumbalum After some serious arm-twisting from the rest of the sane world, led by Joe Biden, the ‘marketing...

International Women’s Day kerfuffle at Ballina

One councillor walked out of Ballina Council's recent meeting during an emotional discussion about speakers at an upcoming IWD event.

Ministers misbehave

Keith Duncan, Pimlico Accusations of appalling behaviour by the Liberal Party in covering up misdeeds within its ranks just keep...

TAFE job cuts not so bad, says Nationals MLC 

Ms Saffin said last week that 29 local jobs were going under restructures and that almost 700 frontline TAFE NSW jobs will be slashed.

After the startling news of an ‘operational error’ in their sewage testing, Byron Shire Council welcomed confirmation from NSW Health late yesterday afternoon that testing of wastewater, as at 30 December 2020, revealed no trace of COVID-19.

It comes after no test results were available for four weeks in November-December.

Council has been providing wastewater samples upon request to NSW Health as part of its Sewage Surveillance Program since July last year.

Sample was frozen

Council was aware that one of its samples for the week 16-22 December was unable to be used because it was frozen.

This happened after the courier failed to pick up the sample and staff put it in the freezer.  Unfortunately the frozen sample could not be used and Council apologises for this error.

In discussions with the Sydney Water laboratory yesterday as to why the other three test results were not available on the NSW Health website it was revealed that there were problems with the courier delivery process after the samples were collected from Council.

One sample froze during delivery to the laboratory.

Unexpected delays with couriers

The remaining two samples were  not able to be used as unexpected delays with the couriers resulted in those samples being delivered to the Sydney Water laboratory above the temperature specification for analysis.

In order to rectify the logistic issues associated with collection and delivery of these samples, Council has been working with the Sydney Water Laboratory and NSW Health and is now using a different courier service to ensure samples reach the lab in a suitable state for testing.

Council understands how important it is for the community to have faith that all is being done to stem the spread of COVID-19, especially during busy holiday times.


Recent stories, information and updates regarding COVID-19

Cult Covid

John Scrivener, Main Arm A careful analysis of Cult Covid must clearly distinguish between four separate and distinct yet interconnected categories of phenomena, namely 1) a virus, 2) an illness, 3) a media hyped narrative, and 4) government imposed restrictions....

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Ballina Airport responds to Melbourne COVID scare

Ballina Byron Gateway Airport has introduced new health measures for travellers arriving from Melbourne, after several Melbourne venues were linked to a confirmed COVID case.

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Human activity, climate change risk more pandemics

New research has revealed climate change, environmental degradation and human activity are creating a perfect storm for more deadly pandemics like COVID-19. Scientists from the University of Western Australia (UWA) say COVID-19 has highlighted the critical need to reduce human impacts...

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Queensland Health issues public health alert

Queensland Health is asking anyone who has arrived from New Zealand since 14 January, including on green corridor flights, to get tested and quarantine until they receive a negative test result.

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Keep free parking at LBH – HSU and Saffin

The Health Services Union has called on Lismore City Council to reconsider a decision to cancel free all-day street parking at Lismore Base Hospital.

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Access to capital critical for small business

Many businesses and in particular small business, have been really struggling under the weight of COVID-19 and with the rollback of Jobkeeper, things have just gotten tougher.

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Meaningful lockdown more satisfying than busyness

New research shows people who pursue meaningful activities – things they enjoy doing – during lockdown feel more satisfied than those who simply keep themselves busy

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UK variant of COVID-19 linked to hotel cleaner

Queensland Health says that the partner of the quarantine hotel cleaner who tested positive to the UK variant of COVID-19 on 7 January 2021, has also tested positive to COVID-19.

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Former MLC critical of councillors in NYE aftermath

Former Greens MLC Ian Cohen has lashed out at councillors for their lack of preparation for NYE.

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Tweed mayor supports Brisbane lockdown

The Mayor of Tweed Chris Cherry says she supports the swift action of the Queensland Government in introducing a 3-day lockdown of the Greater Brisbane area in response to a COVID-19 case.

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Missing teen located safe and well near Tweed Heads

A teen missing in the state’s North has been located safe and well.

Suffolk Park residents pressure councillors over pump track

Councillors, Michael Lyon and Jeanette Martin, met Suffolk Park residents on Saturday to hear concerns around the proposed pump bike track, which is slated for the Linda Vidler park.

Editorial – #ChooseToChallenge the patriarchy

It is easy to think we have almost achieved equality for men and women in a country like Australia – just as long as you don’t think too hard about it.

Byron Wildlife Hospital’s DA up for public comment

A development application for the mobile Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital is now before the public.