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Environmental Service Group

Pasminco site remediation

About the project

Property and Development NSW’s (PDNSW’s) Waste Assets Management Corporation (WAMC) oversees the management of parts of the former Pasminco smelter site through the following activities:

  • Vegetation management
  • Inspection and repair of land capping
  • Stormwater and ground water management
  • Collection and treatment of leachate
  • Environmental monitoring as per the environmental protection licence requirements.

Surface soils on the WAMC-controlled areas of the site are impacted by heavy metals which were deposited during the former smelter’s operations.

Due to access limitations, remediation in these areas is not practical and ongoing environmental management and monitoring is required. WAMC, however, is exploring options to safely open some tracks for public access to parts of this area, including at Munibung Hill.


The Pasminco lead and zinc smelter operated on 92 hectares of land at Boolaroo, Lake Macquarie, from 1897 to 2004.

To remediate the land, contaminated soil (impacted by heavy metals, lead and zinc) generated from the smelting works were encapsulated in containment cells which occupy approximately 22 hectares of the site. These cells contain approximately 1.9 million m3 of contaminated soil.

Responsibility for the ongoing management of the waste containment cells and the environmental management of the former site was transferred to WAMC in October 2019.

Next steps

  • Hunter Central Coast Development Corporation (HCCDC) is responsible for the sale of the remaining 70ha of remediated land under the Lake Macquarie Smelter Site (Perpetual Care of Land) Act 2019.
  • HCCDC is currently subdividing this land to create industrial, commercial and residential lots.
  • Revenue from the sale of this land will be used for ongoing environmental management of the remaining contamination at the former smelter site.
  • WAMC is working with HCCDC and Lake Macquarie Council to develop a safe strategy for opening public access to Munibung Hill.

Get in touch

For more information, email WAMC-admin@dpie.nsw.gov.au or call 1300 109 655.