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PFAS Investigation &
Management Program

RAAF Base Williamtown

Management Area


The Williamtown Expert Panel, led by the NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer Professor Mary O’Kane AC, has made some changes to the Williamtown precautionary advice and the investigation area. This follows a review of the Defence’s final Human Health Risk Assessment (HHRA) report.

The NSW Environment Protection Authority has established a Management Area which comprises of three zones. The Management Area and Investigation Area do not overlap compeltely. The Management Area is smaller in some areas and larger in other areas including Fullerton Cove and additional streets in Salt Ash.

The Australian Government will extend its voluntary blood testing program, epidemiological study and mental health and counselling services to the expanded management area.

Further information on the expanded management area is available at the NSW EPA website.

Further information on blood testing, the epidemiological study and mental health and councelling services is available at the Department of Health website.

RAAF Base Williamtown

PFAS Investigation & Management

RAAF Base Williamtown
In October 2018, Defence completed the detailed environmental investigation into per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) on, and in the vicinity of, RAAF Base Williamtown.

All findings from the investigation are available on the publications page including detailed reports and factsheets.

Defence is now focusing on management and remediation of PFAS contamination within the Management Area.

The outcomes of the investigation have been used to develop a PFAS Management Area Plan that outlines the best management and remediation solutions for the unique circumstances at Williamtown.

Further information is available on the management activities page.

With the conclusion of the investigation, Defence remains committed to working with the community, and to continue being actively involved in the remediation and management of PFAS in Williamtown.

Investigation Timeline

More information about the investigation stages is available on the investigation process page.


PFAS Management Area Plan

Published
Jul 2019

The PFAS Management Area Plan informs the activities Defence will undertake to manage, monitor and reduce potential risks of PFAS exposure on, and around, the Base.

The PFAS Management Area Plan informs the activities Defence will undertake to manage, monitor and reduce potential risks of PFAS exposure on, and around, the Base.


Ecological Risk Assessment

Complete
Oct 2018

This stage built on the findings of the 2016 Preliminary Ecological Risk Assessment. The report outlines PFAS exposure risks for plants and animals in the Investigation Area.

This stage built on the findings of the 2016 Preliminary Ecological Risk Assessment. The report outlines PFAS exposure risks for plants and animals in the Investigation Area.


Off-Site Human Health Risk Assessment

Complete
Dec 2017

This stage built on previous Human Health Risk Assessments by using newly adopted Health Based Guidance Values from the Department of Health and considering new sampling and survey data.

This stage built on previous Human Health Risk Assessments by using newly adopted Health Based Guidance Values from the Department of Health and considering new sampling and survey data.


Environmental Site Assessment

Complete
Dec 2017

This stage refined the 2016 Environmental Site Assessment by addressing data gaps and uncertainties regarding the extent of contamination in some areas. The assessment outlined the location of PFAS in the Investigation Area and how it is moving.

This stage refined the 2016 Environmental Site Assessment by addressing data gaps and uncertainties regarding the extent of contamination in some areas. The assessment outlined the location of PFAS in the Investigation Area and how it is moving.


Human Health Risk Assessment - Addendum

Complete
Apr 2017

This addendum to the 2016 Human Health Risk Assessment considered a new Tolerable Daily Intake released by Food Standards Australia New Zealand for certain PFAS.

This addendum to the 2016 Human Health Risk Assessment considered a new Tolerable Daily Intake released by Food Standards Australia New Zealand for certain PFAS.


Preliminary Ecological Risk Assessment

Complete
Dec 2016

The purpose of the 2016 Preliminary Ecological Risk Assessment was to identify potential exposure-risks to plants and animals within the Investgation Area, for further assessment in a comprehensive Ecological Risk Assessment.

The purpose of the 2016 Preliminary Ecological Risk Assessment was to identify potential exposure-risks to plants and animals within the Investgation Area, for further assessment in a comprehensive Ecological Risk Assessment.


Human Health Risk Assessment

Complete
Aug 2016

The purpose of the 2016 Human Health Risk Assessment was to evaluate potential exposure-risks to people, within the Investgation Area.

The purpose of the 2016 Human Health Risk Assessment was to evaluate potential exposure-risks to people, within the Investgation Area.


Environmental Site Assessment

Complete
Aug 2016

Similar to a Detailed Site Investigation, the 2016 Environmental Site Assessment involved sampling of soil, sediment, surface water and groundwater, to better understand how PFAS moves through the environment.

Similar to a Detailed Site Investigation, the 2016 Environmental Site Assessment involved sampling of soil, sediment, surface water and groundwater, to better understand how PFAS moves through the environment.


Stage 1 and 2 Environmental Investigations

Complete
2015

These stages involved a review of the historical use of firefighting foams on-base to identify potenital sources of PFAS contamination.

These stages involved a review of the historical use of firefighting foams on-base to identify potenital sources of PFAS contamination.

Reports and factsheets for this stage are available on the publications page.