The Indianpost

Orica management faces grilling

It comes after toxic hexavalent chromium leaked from the same manufacturing plant at Kooragang Island on August 8.

The company has come under fire for taking days to inform Stockton residents about the first leak, while Environment Minister Robyn Parker has been criticised for waiting almost 24 hours before notifying the public.

“I’m angry and annoyed at a second breach of environmental laws by Orica, the second in a fortnight, which raises again public concerns and also threats to the environment,” Mr O’Farrell said.

“Two incidents in a fortnight suggest systemic failure.”

Mr O’Farrell defended his government’s handling of the affair and rejected opposition calls for Environment Minister Robyn Parker to be stood down.

“Robyn Parker is doing a fantastic job,” Mr O’Farrell said.

Mr O’Farrell said it was “not true” that Ms Parker had been “missing in action” for 12 days as the opposition claimed.

“Lets not believe Labor’s rhetoric here, rhetoric that includes alarming residents in the area,” he said.

The independent inquiry set up earlier this week to look at delays in Orica’s reporting of the first leak will also examine the second incident, Mr O’Farrell said.

Mr O’Farrell said he was pleased the company responded more swiftly to the second leak.

“It’s also terrific that finally those in the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) understand the government’s determination that when these issues occur, there is proper public notification at the earliest opportunity,” he said.

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