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Question: Lead Pollution in Port Pirie

01 June 2022

 

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS: I seek leave to make a brief explanation before addressing a question without notice to the Minister for Regional Development on the topic of lead pollution at Port Pirie.


The Hon. R.A. SIMMS: InDaily reported yesterday that 42 public houses are located in areas of risk to children under the age of five because they are prone to lead dust. In the article it was stated that all of those 42 homes are currently occupied by at least one child aged under five. It is understood that there is a tender open for a maintenance contractor to facilitate the planning and completion of lead abatement related works in Port Pirie.


My question to the minister is:

Does the Malinauskas government intend to carry out the previous government's pledge to cut lead pollution at the Port Pirie smelter, and will the government rehouse affected families while the lead abatement project is taking place?


The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries):

I thank the honourable member for his question. I am happy to take that on notice and refer it to my colleagues in the other place who have direct responsibility for those matters.

 

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS: Supplementary: when can I expect a response?


The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries): That will be as soon as possible.

 

In reply to the Hon. R.A. SIMMS (1 June 2022).

Written answer tabled (7 July 2022)

The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries): The Minister for Human Services has advised:

Port Pirie has been segmented into lead-risk areas: high, medium and low. A lead-risk map reflecting these areas was updated in April 2020 and provided to the Port Pirie Housing SA office. The current practice is to not allocate families with children under five within the currently defined high-risk area. Existing tenants with children under five residing in the high-risk area, who were allocated prior to the provision of the updated lead-risk map, were given the opportunity to relocate to another medium-risk or low-risk area within Port Pirie.

Families who reside in current medium-risk and low-risk areas will not be relocated during the lead abatement works as these works will focus on the exterior of the house. Work will include covering existing exposed soil and increasing dust suppression to avoid potentially contaminated soil from blowing into homes. The soil will be tested on site prior to commencement of works, and soil with greater than 300 parts per million of lead will be removed from the yard and replaced with clean fill.