Odour at Ipswich

Issued: 1 Apr 2022

The Department of Environment and Science (DES) has increased inspections of waste operators in the Swanbank area following the recent floods to deal with excess water and odour issues.

DES is aware of significant odour issues in the region and is taking action to ensure that those responsible for the odour cease impacting the community as quickly as possible.

A formal investigation into the matter has commenced by the environmental regulator.

One of the landfill operators, Cleanaway, has treated water at its site this week to attempt to reduce odour, with limited success.

DES has now directed Cleanaway to:

  1. begin transferring excess water to offsite locations authorised to receive liquid waste from today (Friday 1 April 2022) to urgently reduce water levels to allow for further treatment to reduce odour;
  2. continue treatment of water on site, including immediately taking steps to better distribute chemical treatments across the water body.

DES is liaising with authority holders at authorised locations that can accept water to allow for the excess to be transferred to reduce the odorous water on site as fast as possible.

Water sampling has been undertaken by DES and Cleanaway, with results showing relatively low levels of contamination.

Officers from the environmental regulator are continuing regular inspections around the Swanbank area to identify and address odour issues which can be common after flooding.

DES will continue to keep the local community informed and will consider potential further enforcement actions as appropriate.

Members of the community can report odour issues by calling 1300 130 372 or submitting an online environmental incident report, which is available under Report an issue.