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EPA reports results of water testing after complaint about Rosebery tailings dam

The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has reported the results of water testing in Rosebery, showing no evidence to support the complaint alleging that leakage from the tailings dam is impacting town drinking water.

The EPA Director, Mr Wes Ford EPA responded to an anonymous complaint from a concerned resident of Rosebery, which alleged that the tailings dam in Rosebery was leaking into the Stitt River and impacting the township drinking supply. He authorised EPA Officers to undertake a site inspection of the tailings dam and collect water samples for testing in order to investigate the matter further.

The following information has been provided today in response to a media request for an update on this issue.

"EPA Officers have reported there was no evidence of seepage from the dam entering the drinking water supply," said Mr Ford.

"To verify this, water samples were collected from the Stitt River, both upstream and downstream of the tailings dam, as well as potable water from within the Rosebery township," he said.

"The water testing parameters selected are those that are indicative of the presence of acid and metalliferous drainage (AMD) that would be expected to be present in any seepage water from the tailings dam.

"Water quality testing at the drinking water supply point has confirmed there is no impact from dam seepage.

"The AMD indicators tested include pH, conductivity, sulphate, fluoride, and various metals, including antimony, arsenic, cadmium, cobalt, chromium, copper, manganese, mercury, nickel, lead and zinc.

"The results show the health-based Australian Drinking Water Guidelines are being achieved," he said.

"The EPA has provided a report to the Public Health section of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)," said Mr Ford.

*In the interests of public disclosure, the EPA Director has made available the above response to media inquiries via the EPA website under News.