Member for MacKillop Nick McBride is chairing a parliamentary committee investigating the safe disposal of contaminated waste in SA.
The Environment, Resources and Development Committee last week launched an inquiry into the safe disposal of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contaminated waste in South Australia.
“PFAS are a group of chemicals that can persist for a long time in the environment as they do not break down naturally,” Mr McBride said.
“They have been used in fire-fighting foam, non-stick cookware, furniture, carpet stain remover and food packaging among other products since the 1950s.”
Mr McBride said SA was the first state to ban the use of PFAS in fire-fighting foams in 2018.
“SA does not currently have a designated waste disposal facility which is licensed under the Environment Protection Act to accept PFAS contaminated waste,” he said.
Mr McBride said earlier this year the South Australian Environment Protection Authority refused an application by Southern Waste ResourceCo to receive PFAS waste at its landfill site on Tatachilla Road at McLaren Vale.
“The committee understands that this is a complex issue for South Australians,” he said.
“We know that the long-term impacts of PFAS are still under investigation and also that PFAS chemicals, while being phased out, are still present in our community.
“The committee would like to hear from experts, companies, industry, communities and individuals about the criteria for the disposal of PFAS in South Australia, including the consequences of not having an appropriate pathway for their disposal.”
The committee invites submissions from anyone with an interest in the issues.
Visit www.parliament.sa.gov.au to make a submission, addressing the terms of reference by October 6.