It’s Time for Ownership and Active Solutions
Both each of the State Governments and the Federal Governments need to admit that it’s time for ownership and active solutions for all the PFAS contamination in all the places that the toxic fire-fighting foam has been used in Australia. The trying to limit liability and to force people through the courts is appalling to say the least. The health of many people has declined so much so that some have died, while others are in the debilitating position of struggling with galloping cancers. To try to hide behind the so called “no proven direct link from the contaminates to the illnesses” is totally callous in every way and is unacceptable to the Australian public. Considering that it ought to have been known in 1980 that this product posed serious health risks I am appalled that the Australian Government permitted the Royal Australian Air Force to use such a toxic product in the manner it did and to permit it to escape their containment areas to pollute far beyond the bases. This toxic product has contaminated soil, ground water, drains, creeks, streams, rivers, bays, and bores around the homes, farms and businesses that are near neighbours to the RAAF Bases. The RAAF is sworn to defend the Australian people and yet its actions have harmed many Australians and have caused many to die very prematurely – THIS IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!
Late Mail from Newcastle:
Essentially, this article reveals that the toxic PFAS is still leaving the RAAF Base and despite a water treatment plant on site there seems to be no end to the continual contamination of the areas surrounding the Base. Meanwhile the continued expansion of the RAAF Base is full speed ahead without any real demonstrated concern to the health of the residents inside the “red zone” or the fact that they can have mortgages on properties that are worthless as a sale-able preposition. So the residents are unable to leave their property and yet the Government is still not prepared to buy out the contaminated properties or to compensate for the total pollution damage that has destroyed their dreams of establishing a family home in a rural setting. The meeting was further told that there is no provable direct link between the PFAS and health issues that the residents have been inflicted with. The whole inquiry session in Newcastle has seen nothing more than stonewalling and no admissions of direct or even indirect responsibility to the concerns raised by the Williamtown communities.
This is far more than enough – It is time to accept responsibility and have compensation flow with compassion and real concern that seems to be beyond the Government and the Opposition!!!!
The extent of the contamination is still not fully known!!!
The Bullsbrook Contamination Problem:
But it is not only at the base but at other places in Western Australia
The Darwin Contamination Problem:
And at Katherine as well
The Adelaide contamination Problem:
East Sale Victoria Contamination problem:
Though the farmers are warned not to eat the livestock that they sell as the PFAS in their animals can raise the levels of PFAS in their bodies, it is considered ok for the general public because they will not exclusively eat the contaminated animals. There is a government claim that there is no direct evidence of adverse health effects from the contamination though there are some so called “safe limits”.
The Queensland contamination problem:
NSW Williamtown’s problem:
Possible Solution to cleanup the mess of the toxic PFAS:
The information in the link above Synergy claim that they are able to remove the toxic PFAS from water via a process that they have developed. How successful this would be to clean up all our toxic contaminated sites around Australia is a very important question.
There is no other plan that has come to light to date and so it seems that we should begin to have field tests to begin now. Several State Governments have banned the products in their states while others claim that they are unable to do that. It seems to me that each state should ban the product completely from their state. Because each state have used the product in both fire-fighting and mine rescue training that attempts to clean up their own polluted areas must commence as soon as possible. Each state should come together and jointly as well as separately call on the Federal Government to remove the toxic pollutant from all Commonwealth sites and to commence a cleanup of all sites.
The States should jointly set up a national pollution watchdog to hold the Federal Government accountable!
The lives of many people in Australia have been affected because their homes, their farms, and their businesses have suffered loss and each and every one needs to be adequately compensated and when and where necessary they may need to have their land holding purchased and moved to uncontaminated places with full and just compensation.
The health of many Australians have been seriously compromised and adequate and complete health care should be offered to all. As some of the health concerns may not be evident immediately for some of the people exposed to this toxic pollutant and so provisions for future health issues must be put into place.
This will be very costly and it seems to me that the manufacture of the product 3M should be pursued to cover the huge costs. There have been successful cases against 3M and there is no reason why a future case correctly run will not be successful and so it must be pursued in the strongest legal process possible.
I, as the policy coordinator of the Christian Democratic Party, will do all I can to see a just outcome for this long and unfortunate blight on the Australian Defence Department via poor processes of the Royal Australian Air Force management and their political masters of both the Liberal/National Parties and the Labor Party on each and every occasion they have been in government at a Federal Level.