Ministers launch PFAS research program

Defence Minister Marise Payne and Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham have jointly launched a $13 million research program to address poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the environment.

The PFAS Remediation Research Program will support the development of innovative technologies to investigate and remediate PFAS contaminated areas, including soil and other solid contaminated debris, groundwater, waterways and marine systems.

Runoff from fire fighting training and operations at military airports contains PFAS, and this is believed to have caused contamination of ground water in surrounding areas, in particular those around RAAF bases Williamtown and Tindal, and the Oakey Army aviation training centre.

The PFAS Remediation Research Program will fund a range of research projects focused on

minimising PFAS in the environment; developing effective technologies that can be applied to remediate PFAS contaminated soil, waterways, waste, debris and/or large volumes of groundwater; and developing options and mechanisms through which these effective technologies can be applied in the field.

The first selection round of the PFAS Remediation Research Program will be open to eligible Administering Organisations from December 2017 to February 2018, inviting grant applications for between $50,000 to $1 million per year, for one to three years.