Council allays concerns for environment after waste management facility leaks, potentially contaminating Muttama Creek

LEAKED FOOTAGE: A spill from a waste management tank along Hovell Street reportedly burst earlier this week, sending up to 20,000L of waste liquid along council land and street property. Picture: Lachlan Grey
LEAKED FOOTAGE: A spill from a waste management tank along Hovell Street reportedly burst earlier this week, sending up to 20,000L of waste liquid along council land and street property. Picture: Lachlan Grey

Leakage from a council facility has resulted in unspecified quantities of waste flowing down a major Cootamundra street, potentially impacting upon the welfare of Muttama Creek. 

The Herald understands the leak occurred overnight on Sunday, August 6 and may have contained anywhere between or up to 5000 and 20,000 litres of bitumen emulsion.

When approached for comment, council interim facilities manager Greg Ewing said the incident was being resolved but declined to release further information.

“We are aware of the leak and we have been attending to it,” he said.

Concerns for the creek’s welfare were allayed by Muttama Creek Rejuvenation Group (MCRG) spokesman Graham Johnson, who said appropriate measures were being taken to ensure containment. 

MARKED: Trucks have been operating along the banks of the Muttuma clearing away evidence of the spill. Picture: Lachlan Grey

MARKED: Trucks have been operating along the banks of the Muttuma clearing away evidence of the spill. Picture: Lachlan Grey

“Mr Ewing contacted us directly, he’s also notified the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of the incident, and we know they're putting processes in motion,” Mr Johnson said.

Council has reportedly advised the MCRG that the leak occurred while cleaning out the tanks and may have been caused by pipe residue. 

”We don’t think there’s going to be a lasting negative impact on the creek.”

PILED UP: Sand was used to soak up the leak and prevent further contamination. Picture: Lachlan Grey

PILED UP: Sand was used to soak up the leak and prevent further contamination. Picture: Lachlan Grey

The EPA confirmed the CGRC had reported a bitumen emulsion leak from their depot at Cootamundra that occurred sometime over the weekend.

“Council advised that a small amount entered Muttama Creek via the stormwater drain but that it has been contained and cleaned up,” an EPA spokesperson said.