Ground Water Investigation

Ground Water Investigation

Water Use Survey and Groundwater Sampling

The Bunbury Harvey Regional Council (BHRC) is currently undertaking investigations in respect to waste management and landfill operations at the Stanley Road Waste Management Facility (referred to as the ‘Site’ and/or ‘facility’) in accordance with the statutory framework under the Contaminated Sites Act 2003 (CS Act).

Historically, the facility was a sand extraction mine and subsequently has operated as a waste management facility since 1990, which has included the management of residential waste and some quantities of commercial waste.

The Site was classified as Possibly Contaminated – Investigation Required (PCIR) under the CS Act in May 2007 and again in August 2018 following information submitted to the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER). The Site has been classified again in September 2021 as Contaminated – Remediation Required (CRR) under the CS Act following additional information submitted to DWER in August 2021.

BHRC investigations are ongoing and are following a staged process in accordance with guidance, including:

  • National Environment Protection Council (NEPC), 1999, National Environmental Protection (Assessment of Site Contamination) Measure (as amended) (registered May 2013); and
  • Department of Environment and Regulation (DER), 2014, Assessment and Management of Contaminated Sites.

BHRC have engaged Cardno Environmental Consultants to progress the investigational works and have appointed an independent accredited DWER Contaminated Sites Auditor in a mandatory auditor capacity.

As part of ongoing investigations, a Water Use Survey and Groundwater Sampling program is proposed to be undertaken in the residential area to the west of the Stanley Road Waste Management Facility. The focus of the program is to understand groundwater use(s) within the surrounding residential area and groundwater quality with respect to potential impacts with Contaminants of Potential Concern (CoPC) associated with waste management and landfilling actives. Recent investigation works has identified Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in the groundwater at, and downgradient of the Facility.

The proposed sampling of residential bore water is a proactive approach focusing on the end point use and potential receptors. This approach will provide data and allow the assessment with respect to groundwater quality in the immediate residential area and its beneficial uses, noting that the residential area is services by scheme drinking water.

BHRC is continuing additional contaminated site investigations at the facility and surrounds, which includes further monitoring and investigation scheduled for late 2021.

As part of the ongoing operation of the Site, BHRC are moving away from unlined cells and are implementing a number of changes to minimise environmental impacts including:

  • Installation of a flare to reduce landfill gas emissions;
  • Capping and rehabilitation of the existing landfill cells;
  • Development of new lined landfill cell to minimise discharge to the environment; and
  • Development of a compost facility.