11 May 2021

Mount Maunganui PFAS: Further testing finds no toxic compounds at marae

7:21 pm on 11 May 2021

An initial investigation has detected no toxic compounds in soil near a Mount Maunganui marae after PFAS was detected in an industrial area last month.

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Whareroa Marae (File image). Photo: RNZ / Te Aniwa Hurihanganui

In April, alarm bells rang when the chemical, used in some firefighting foams, was detected near Whareroa Marae following the review of a contaminated land assessment part of a resource consent application.

The concentrations of PFAS detected in the open drain next to the airport and at the outlet of this drain into the harbour do not exceed the recreational human health guideline adopted by central government.

Further testing done by Bay of Plenty Regional Council has now found no PFAS in soil at the marae, nearby recreation and residential areas, or in further sampling undertaken in the hangi pit.

In a statement, general manager of regulatory services Sarah Omundsen said staff met with residents last night to update them on the results and discuss the next stage of the investigation.

She said the council would push on with a wider risk assessment and review of the potential sources of PFAS in the Mount Maunganui industrial area.

"We will continue to work alongside Tauranga City Council and the Whareroa community throughout this process, and seek advice from Toi te Ora Public Health as required."

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