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Concern Wwii Chemical Dump Off Nsw Coast Deteriorating


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Concern WWII chemical dump off NSW coast deteriorating

Two major fishing groups are calling for a clean-up of the remnants of dangerous wartime chemicals dumped off the New South Wales far south coast.

The Coastal Rights Association and the Narooma Ports Committee say hundreds of steel drums were dropped onto the continental shelf after World War II and the Korean and Vietnam conflicts.

The fishermen say steel drums containing arsenic, mustard gas, cyanide, and carcinogenic substances are sitting in stockpiles off Batemans Bay, Tuross, Narooma and Eden.

They say an increasing number of drums have been turning up in trawling nets.

The Narooma Ports Committee president, Phil Creagh, says he is worried the drums will soon start breaking up after years of corrosion.

"Apparently the 44 gallon drums have been sealed, put in the water and apparently some of them maybe are starting to leak after 20, 30, 40 years," he said.

"What will happen when they finally rupture? And that's just a matter of time, what is likely to happen [is] there will be a massive fish kill in the immediate vicinity and an obvious damage to the biodiversity on the sea floor."

Edited by MallacootaPete
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