Coal miner detects high metal levels in nearby waterways

Griffin Coal has released a report which states that high levels of metals have been found in the waterways around the town of Collie.

Its report discovered higher than normal levels of aluminium, iron, and mercury, according to The West.

The WA Department of Environment and Conservation added that while these findings are cause for an investigation, they are still within human health guidelines.

While Griffin ruled out its Ewington coal mine as the cause of the high levels, Collie-Preston MP Mick Murray has called for an investigation to discover the reason behind these high mercury levels.

“We’re a bit perplexed by the whole thing, we have air monitors around Collie and no-one has ever broached that with me about mercury levels within the air being high, so whether it’s naturally occurring or it comes from industry, no-one’s quite sure,” he told The West.

These latest development follow on the back of Esperance finally finishing its lead clean up rehabilitation work following the massive lead contamination in 2007.

Griffin explained that its operations are not the source of the contamination as mercury was detected upstream of its Ewington mine.

Earlier this year explosives manufacturer Orica recorded a higher than average mercury vapour emission at its Port Botany site in Sydney.

At the time, the EPA said “the exceedance was linked to an incident involving the soil remediation process. OEH has issued Orica with a notice and also required Orica to immediately notify residents of the incident and report to OEH that this action has been taken.

According to Orica, the meter recorded levels in excess of the 30 minute average compliance level of 2 micrograms, peaking at around 4 micrograms.

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