Page 757 - Week 03 - Tuesday, 8 April 2014

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MS BURCH: I have confidence in the National Disability Insurance Agency and also in Therapy ACT and its existing practices. Whilst we are going through a significant change, which is the right change—and I reflect that Mr Wall agrees that this is the right change to make—our good practice will continue.

Environment—Koppers site

MS LAWDER: My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development. Minister, in an article in the Canberra Times on Monday, 7 April it was alleged that:

The ACT government is selling land around the contaminated Koppers site without telling some potential buyers, including a childcare service, about the nearby pollution.

It was also alleged in the Canberra Times article that the sale documents for this land state that the government makes, and I quote, “no warranty or representation as to the environmental condition or state of the soil, groundwater, contamination or the existence or non-existence of any substance on or affecting the land.” Minister, is it true that potential buyers of the land in the New West industrial park were not advised of this nearby pollution issue?

MR CORBELL: Yes, it is true and it is true because there is no contamination on those sites. The contamination associated with the Koppers site, as confirmed by the testing that I released last Friday, confirms that the water pollution below ground at the Koppers site has not moved and is retained within the perched aquifer on the site. And, as confirmed by the EPA in its advice to me, which I released last Friday, that pollution presents no danger to human health or to the environment.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Minister, can you guarantee that no carcinogens are present in the New West industrial park area, given that testing has not been completed in this area since 2008?

MR CORBELL: As I have previously indicated, the advice to me from the EPA is that the pollution which is still present below ground on the old Koppers site does not present any risk to human health or to the environment.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Minister, why did you not advise a childcare service that was going through the purchasing process of land of the potential presence of chemicals such as hexavalent chromium?

MR CORBELL: There is no presence of that chemical on that site and the childcare provider did not purchase the land. We are in this unusual situation where a person

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