Fluoride Action Network

Bourke Shire accused of illegally dumping fluoride

Source: ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) | January 23rd, 2012 | By Robyn Herron
Location: Australia

The Bourke Shire Council has been accused of illegally dumping chemicals at its waste depot plant.

The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has charged the council with unlawfully transporting and disposing the chemical in October 2010.

The council says the fluoride was in its original packaging and shrink wrapped in plastic when it was buried four metres deep at the landfill.

The Bourke Shire’s general manager, Geoff Wise, says the council had more of the chemical than it needed and did not realise that it was not permitted to dump the waste at the depot.

He says the sodium fluoride has since been removed.

The council will plead guilty to the charges and the matter has been adjourned in the Bourke Local Court until next month.

A EPA spokeswoman says the action is being taken as the council breached the Protection of the Environment Operations Act.

She says the depot cannot be lawfully used as a waste facility for sodium fluoride, which is classified as hazardous and dangerous.

The council faces a maximum penalty of $22,000.

Sodium fluoride is added to urban water supplies to improve people’s dental health.