Mayor Cr David Edwards says a sleeping giant has been woken in Bacchus Marsh and those seeking to store, categorise and dispose of contaminated soil near the town have no one to blame but themselves.
“The big turnout at this week’s protest rally sends a very clear message: don’t take Bacchus Marsh for mugs,” Cr Edwards said.
“Residents are alarmed about the lack of transparency and openness and want and deserve answers from those seeking to store, categorise and dispose of contaminated soil close to our town.”
The Mayor and several other Councillors attended this week’s rally at the Village Green in the main street of Bacchus Marsh. The crowd was estimated at between 1,200 and 1,500 people. Around 400 people attended a public meeting two weeks ago and petitions circulating the town have collected thousands of signatures.
Residents are concerned about the impacts PFAS contaminated soil could have on their health, waterways, traffic and the reputation of the town as a major food bowl for Melbourne.
“Council shares the community’s concerns and is calling for greater transparency from all the parties involved in this proposal, including the Victorian Government,” he said.
“Those advocating for this have only themselves to blame for awakening a sleeping giant. Council and the community have been left in an information vacuum.
“The proponents have been given every chance to provide key technical reports to Council and they have declined all requests to do so.
“Without these reports, how can Council and the community have any confidence that the verbal assurances being given by Transurban and its partners, government agencies and others are supported by evidence that has been independently peer reviewed?”