Initial testing for possible contaminated areas around the Jervis Bay Range Facility and HMAS Creswell from the historic use of fire fighting foams has only found one reading above recommended levels.
As part of the investigations, groundwater and surface water samples were taken at seven locations on the Jervis Bay Range Facility (JBRF) and at Creswell.
These are far different results from those taken off-base at HMAS Albatross where of 22 test sites PFAS chemicals were discovered in 17 locations.
PFAS are a group of chemicals that include perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS), which were commonly used in firefighting foams.
Surface water testing was undertaken at three sites on the Jervis Bay Range.
Two were below recreational use (for things like swimming, playing in water, water skiing, fishing etc) criteria, while one was above recommended levels.
That one location was on the southern end of the range’s east/west runway.
Of four groundwater sample sites (testing of the water table and areas like bores or wells) low level contaminants were detected at only one site. But that detection was still well below drinkable guidelines set down by Environmental Health Standing Committee (enHealth).
The three other sites were clear.
These results were released at the latest community information meeting at Jervis Bay Primary School on Tuesday night into possible contamination. The meeting was chaired by HMAS Creswell commanding officer Captain Charles Huxtable and Rear Admiral Clint Thomas of the Estate and Infrastructure Group.
Despite the findings, further detailed site investigation will now be undertaken.
The testing will include on-site soil samples, surface water and sediment testing, on-site within drainage channels, off-site downstream at drainage areas, lagoons and lakes and background further up-stream of naval base.
Groundwater investigations will include the installation of additional shallow and multi level monitoring bores, gauges at all bores, as well as samples and assess all new locations.
Scoping and planning of the detailed investigation works is underway while field works are expected to start next month and continue until August.
The results of that testing are expected to be released in early 2018.