Magellan - Testing for lead contamination around Fremantle Port

[COUNCIL — Wednesday, 23 February 2011]

Hon Lynn MacLaren; Hon Helen Morton


Hon LYNN MacLAREN to the minister representing the Minister for Environment:
I refer to the transport of Magellan Metals lead carbonate through Fremantle port:
(1) What testing has been done of the water and associated sediment in Fremantle harbour and the lower
Swan River to ascertain whether there has been lead contamination?
(2) Have rainwater tanks near the port been tested to ascertain whether there has been lead contamination?
(3) Will the minister provide me with the results of these tests?
(4) Is monitoring of levels of lead dust at the port undertaken continuously, or at specified intervals?
(5) Are the sea containers used to transport the bags of lead hermetically sealed?

Hon HELEN MORTON replied:
I thank the honourable member for some notice of this question.
(1) As per the requirements of ministerial statement 783, Magellan Metals undertakes monitoring of lead in
the sediment at 20 locations within Fremantle harbour. The results of the recent sediment sampling
were provided in February 2011.
(2) As per the requirements of ministerial statement 783, Magellan Metals monitors the lead within
19 rainwater tanks along the transport route; two of these rainwater tanks are near Fremantle port. The
rainwater tanks are sampled on a six-monthly basis, and the latest results were provided
in February 2011.
(3) The results are all publicly available on the Magellan Metals website; however, for ease of reference, I
table the attached information.
(4) Monitoring of lead in particulates is undertaken at Fremantle port in two different manners. Highvolume
air sampling is conducted during one continuous 24-hour period every six days, and there is
one extra continuous 24-hour sampling period during unloading or loading of Magellan lead containers.
Dust deposition is also sampled at Fremantle port on a monthly basis.
(5) Lead carbonate concentrate is transported in double-lined, sealed bags that are sieve and waterproof.
These bags are placed within locked shipping containers.