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Covering The Banana Shire
Central West Queensland

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23 February, 2021

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UPDATED: IT’S DAM CLEAN! Town’s drinking water given the all clear

Citizens of Biloela can rest easy knowing that their drinking water is safe according to recent testing for PFAS substances.

By Michael R Williams

Some private bores were found to have PFAS levels over what is recommended for drinking

Worries about PFAS substances in the Biloela’s drinking water can be put to rest as recent tests have come up all clear. 
On Tuesday, February 9, PFAS was found in private bores around Callide Creek after CS Energy conducted voluntary testing. 
Some were found to be nearly two times the recommended drinking limit.
Further testing was undertaken under the guise of environmental consulting firm CQG.
In the following weeks, the Banana Shire Council developed an environmental and public health monitoring program they described as “detailed”.
The results from which prompted the council to say the water was “safe to drink”, as they indicated PFAS substance levels to be “well below the recommended drinking levels”. 
Council said the monitoring program included “an investigation into the area’s groundwater network with the objective of identifying any potential impacts to water quality from PFAS and other potential contaminants.”.
Mayor Nev Ferrier said “It will be a relief to the whole Biloela community that the higher-than-expected levels of PFAS in some parts of the water table have not adversely impacted on the town drinking water. It is reassuring to see that our existing water quality procedures are working effectively.”.
The results found are consistent with previous PFAS monitoring conducted by the Council in the past two years.  
Banana Shire Council Member Melissa Corfield states that the Council has engaged with both Queensland Health and CQG in the preliminary monitoring of PFAS. She says, "the water is extremely safe to drink."
The FDA advises PFAS levels to be under 0.1 and PFOA be under 0.7 which they are. 

The following table represents the end of pipe result for BIL13 which was 0.0089 μg/L approximately a 10th of the limit set for the drinking water in the NEPM. 
All results were well under the 0.07 microlitre limit for PFOS+PFHxS.

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