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Environment Protection Authority

Ourimbah Catchment Water Quality Sampling Results

Media release: 12 February 2016

The second round of water quality testing results from Ourimbah Catchment were released today by the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) showing the area to be in good health.

The NSW EPA begun testing the catchment in September 2015 to address community concerns alleging runoff from the Terra Verde landfill in Central Mangrove had entered the catchment.

Steve Beaman, the NSW EPA’s Executive Director of Waste and Resource Recovery, said the EPA has met with the Gosford community a number of times and is working with them to address their concerns about water quality in the Catchment.

“The NSW EPA takes all reports of environmental impacts very seriously. Given residents’ concerns we engaged the Office of Environment and Heritage’s (OEH) Science team to test the catchment in September and November 2015, with the community guiding us to the places where they had concerns.

“The sampling consisted of chemical analysis for a broad range of metals, pollutants and macroinvertebrates, which are small insects or worms that live in fresh water.

“The first round of test results showed levels for these metals and pollutants to be below Australian guidelines for fresh and marine water quality. Tests for Macroinvertebrates, showed there was high diversity, including those that are sensitive to pollution, which is a strong indicator of good creek health.

“These results of the second round of testing released today also show the creeks to be in good health and not impacted by the landfill,” Mr Beaman said.

The NSW EPA will continue to conduct regular inspections of the Ourimbah Catchment and is scheduled to meet with members of the Gosford community this coming week to discuss the second round of test results and devise an ongoing water sampling plan. The NSW EPA will also continue to work with Wyong Shire Council and the OEH Science team in the ongoing monitoring of the Catchment.

Residents with reports of environmental impacts in the Ourimbah Catchment, should contact the NSW EPA’s Environment Line on 131 555.

Contact: Public Affairs

Page last updated: 12 February 2016