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The Local Environment

Factory blamed for dumping fuel in lake
By Sarah Heinzman (The West Australian June 25 2001)

A CANNING VALE factory is believed to be responsible for dumping fuel down a drain, killing birds in a lake and threatening the ecology of a creek.

The Department of Environmental Protection (www.environ.wa.gov.au) searched kilometers of drains to find the source of up to 100 litres of PO5, and oil-based diesel.  It left a brown, oily scum on the surface of the lake on Whaleback Golf Course in Parkwood, next to the Canning Vale industrial area.

The lake drains into Bannister Creek, which runs through a residential area.  The problem was reported to the DEP early on Saturday morning.  By the afternoon, the pollution had worsened, causing a pungent smell and killing at least three birds.  At least three other birds were left coated with oil while much birdlife appeared to have left the area.

The DEP yesterday cleaned the lake, using chemicals to dissolve and remove the oil.  The DEP said the name of the business suspected of the dumping would not be released until official testing and verification had taken place

DEP said there had been problems with pollutants draining into the lake for more than three years.  But random tests in the past had failed to find the source or sources of the problem.

ne business in the Canning Vale industrial area had been warned about carpet cleaners going into drains and was told to set up an approved drainage system.  There had been no problems with that business since.  DEP was also involved in educating industry about safe disposal of pollutants and held regular information sessions.

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