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16/12 - Plan for contaminated Bendigo groundwater to be pumped to Woodvale evaporation ponds

It appears progress is being made as authorities discuss how to deal with the contaminated groundwater rising under Bendigo.

The dirty and smelly groundwater is a legacy of Bendigo's gold mining past.

Unity Mining's decision in 2011 to cease gold production means authorities have to work out how the groundwater will be managed.

In a report to their meeting tomorrow night, Bendigo councillors are told the Victorian Government has reached a deal with Unity to have the water pumped to evaporation ponds at Woodvale, north of Bendigo.

The new Labor Government would still need to sign off on the deal.

Council staff said this plan would help control dust at the site in the short-term but that Woodvale residents want the ponds to eventually be closed and rehabilitated.

Councillors will vote on whether to endorse the proposal.

The Department of Environment and Primary Industries said existing approvals were in place for Unity Mining to pump groundwater to the Woodvale evaporation ponds.

Woodvale residents will meet tonight to discuss the latest developments.


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