Toxic Truth: State 'stonewalling' on Boolaroo remediation say Greens, ALP

THE state government has been accused of stonewalling community calls for it to fully decontaminate Boolaroo and surrounds of lead contamination. 

Labor and the Greens leant their weight to community criticism of the government’s response to revelations the area still contains levels of contamination significantly higher than national health guidelines.

Opposition Leader John Robertson called on Premier Mike Baird on Friday to meet with affected residents and act on their concerns.

‘‘Labor is calling for independent soil testing to occur at the Boolaroo site, and and an independent review of the government’s lead abatement strategy,’’ he said. 

‘‘The Premier should be urgently demanding a list of decontamination options and then acting on them.’’

Greens environment spokewoman Mehreen Faruqi said the government had a responsibility to properly decontaminate Boolaroo.

‘‘We know that there are very real concerns about the effectiveness of the lead abatement strategy and contaminated soil continues to put people’s health at risk,’’ Dr Faruqi said.  ‘‘The Premier must commit to investigating and revisiting the lead abatement strategy and take responsibility to ensure the area is remediated.’’  

Mr Baird promised a week ago to ‘‘listen and understand in detail’’ the plight of north Lake Macquarie residents.

Mehreen Faruqi

Mehreen Faruqi

Environment Minister Rob Stokes said a working group announced last month would provide options on ‘‘how we can ensure the community continues to be safe and we protect the vulnerable from excessive personal cost.’’ 

Hunter New England Health has also announced blood-level testing for children under five would commence early next year. 

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