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Hundreds Of Sydney Sites Tested For Asbestos-Contaminated Mulch

Sydney parks, homes and schools are being investigated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for mulch laden with asbestos, after being detected at sites across the city.

A workforce of over 130 people is working to find potentially contaminated sites. EPA Chief Executive Tony Chappell said it’s gearing up as the largest investigation in the environment authority’s history.

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More than 70 parks and garden beds around Sydney have been fenced off while asbestos assessors collect samples.

“What we’ve realised is from the start of that process through to the bottom of the supply chain, that it’s bigger than we think,” said Environment Minister Penny Sharpe.

Sites that have returned with a positive test include hospitals, schools and railway stations. You can see a full list of reported sites on the NSW EPA website.

It’s been reported all but one sample has been bonded asbestos – which means it is mixed with a harder substance such as concrete and is considered less immediately dangerous as it’s unlikely to be inhaled.

Confirmed sites in Sydney and NSW

  • Rozelle parklands – 17 locations in and around the park
  • Two sites along the Prospect Highway project between Prospect and Blacktown
  • Electricity substation at Dulwich Hill railway station
  • Electricity substation at Canterbury railway station
  • Electricity substation at Campsie railway station
  • Belmore railway station in a landscaped area near the car park
  • Punchbowl railway station in the railway corridor
  • Nowra Bridge
  • Regatta Park in Emu Plains
  • Liverpool West public school
  • Campbelltown hospital
  • Belmore Park in Haymarket
  • Victoria Park in Camperdown
  • Harmony Park in Surry Hills (friable asbestos)
  • The Parramatta light rail project at Telopea
  • St John of God hospital in North Richmond
  • Woolworths in Kellyville
  • Transport for NSW park in Wiley Park
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Schools being tested for asbestos-contaminated mulch

The NSW EPA says it is “precautionary testing only” and so far there is no evidence of contamination at the following schools:

  • Allambie Heights public school in Allambie Heights
  • International grammar school in Ultimo
  • Mt Annan Christian college in Mt Annan
  • North Sydney public school in North Sydney
  • Penrith Christian school in Orchard Hills
  • St Luke’s Catholic college in Marsden Park (closed Friday)
  • Westmead Christian grammar in Westmead

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