MEDIA RELEASE            FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Wednesday 31 July 2019

PFAS poisoning in Katherine is “A sign of Reckless Disregard of Life” 

  • Delay in clean up shows disregard for life and life systems
  • Three towns forever linked by poison

“The Australian Defence Force has taken 15 years to move to clean up PFAS contamination and this shows reckless disregard of life and life systems.” said Ms Annette Brownlie, Chair of the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN).

“We’d have to ask about what other poisons the ADF know about now that they are avoiding telling the public about?” asked Ms Brownlie.

Speaking in the lead up to the Independent Peaceful Australia Network conference, Australia at the Crossroads, Time for an Independent Foreign Policy, in Darwin, next weekend, IPAN Chairperson Annette Brownlie said:

“This is a crisis we could expect from Defence which is a department more interested in spending $55bn on new jets which may not work, or $100bn on submarines which will probably be obsolete rather than addressing the health of people who may have been poisoned by their inaction. It appears they have known for 30 years and done virtually nothing.”

“At Williamtown airbase this last weekend we saw the disgusting display of flash new jets, flown for millions of dollars while the authorities have still not released the health reports, or stopped the release of PFAS contaminated water into valuable ecosystems at either Williamtown, Oakey or Katherine”, stated Ms Brownlie.

“These three towns and their peoples are forever linked by poison – thanks to Defence where officials build grand careers on displaying engineering brilliance to fight unjust wars.

How is it they can organise the building and supply of tanks and ships but can’t clean up a contaminated site or care for a local population. How many other sites is this happening in? “Ms Brownlie asked.

IPAN’s national conference, Australia at the Crossroads, Time for an Independent Foreign Policy, is being held in Darwin, 2-4th August 2019, along with recognizing the global and local environmental impacts of military activities.

Media Interviews: Contact Annette Brownlie 0431 597 256

IPAN Media Liaison:  Kathryn Kelly, contact 0417 269 984