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Lawyers concerned by recent discovery of PFAS contamination

“Lawyers concerned by recent discovery of PFAS contamination in Auckland”
New Zealand specialist litigation firm, Shine Lawyers, whose Australian parent is leading claims by landowners in Australia ( https://www.shine.com.au/service/class-actions/pfas-contamination-class-actions ) is concerned by the discovery of PFAS contamination in Auckland.

Shine Lawyers have taken a leading role in advising people who may be affected by this contamination (https://www.shinelawyers.co.nz/services/pfas-contamination-claims ) and have been calling for wider and more transparent testing of the entire ecosystem to understand the true extent of the PFAS contamination issue. (https://pfasproject.com/2018/04/25/nz-pfas-contamination-a-toxic-time-bomb-shine-lawyers/ )

This has been validated in the latest testing released by MFE which shows that contamination has been found in soil, surface water, waterways, streams and marine life surrounding the Whenuapai Air Base.

This is no surprise to solicitor Tim Gunn, who is heading the NZ team. Mr. Gunn has been critical of the Defence Department’s led testing undertaken at sites across New Zealand. Mr. Gunn believes that, based on advice from Australian experts, the testing type and methodology used by Defence is inadequate to understand the true extent of the contamination issue. The uncertainty around testing is causing significant hardship for local residents trying to come to terms with this issue. Mr. Gunn says “Our Australian experience has shown us that this is not just a water contamination issue. Separate to the health issues associated with PFAS, the presence of these contaminants can have a drastic effect on land value. People in Australia have taken legal action to compensate them for a drop in land prices that has effectively trapped them in their contaminated regions.

This latest positive testing adds to the growing list of PFAS contaminated sites across New Zealand including the Devonport Naval Base, the Palmerston North Airport, South Taranaki, Ohakea Airbase and Woodburn Airbase.

To date no testing has been done in the Hobsonville Point housing development despite knowledge that this area was used for dumping of wastewater from the Whenuapai Air Base.

Further testing results for Devenport are due to be released at the end of the year.

Shine Lawyers calls on landowners in Auckland to take the initiative to understand the true impact of this toxic chemical. Shine Lawyers are closely monitoring the situation and will be in contact with affected parties to ensure that the appropriate entities are held to account.

© Scoop Media

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