Orica Botany Aerial Banner 2014

Overview of the Botany Groundwater Cleanup Project

As a result of manufacturing activities that no longer occur, the groundwater beneath Botany Industrial Park (BIP) and nearby areas has been contaminated with chemical compounds commonly known as chlorinated hydrocarbons (CHCs). 

Orica is responsible for managing the groundwater contamination caused by its historical operations and is committed to cleaning it up to prevent long-term environmental damage.  

Orica established the Botany Groundwater Cleanup Project to manage the groundwater contamination and prevent it from entering Botany Bay. This is achieved by hydraulically containing the contaminated groundwater and treating it to usable standard at a Groundwater Treatment Plant (GTP). 

How did the Contamination Occur?

Groundwater in Botany and nearby areas was contaminated by various chemicals after more than a century of industrial operations by multiple companies in the area, before the implementation of strict government regulated environmental controls. Orica’s predecessor, ICI Australia, and other industries conducted operations associated with CHCs in the area that have leaked into the ground and have slowly seeped through the soil and dissolved, creating large plumes of contaminated groundwater. 

How is the Contamination Being Remediated? 

The Botany Groundwater Cleanup Project is a multi-action approach to contain the contaminated groundwater, prevent it from entering Botany Bay, and treat the contaminated groundwater for non-potable reuse.  

The Project has been informed by many years of research and investigations, and Orica routinely reviews its remediation approach in consultation with international experts and local regulators.  Aerial view of the Groundwater Treatment Plant

A core element of the Project has involved the design, construction and operation of the GTP (right),  as well as ongoing evaluation and, if practicable, implementation of Dense Non-Aqueous Phase Liquid (DNAPL) source area investigations and removal technologies.  

To ensure the protection of human health and the environment, an extensive environmental monitoring and reporting program is in place, and a Human Health Risk Assessment (HHRA) has been undertaken to identify and mitigate risks to human health.

Orica has also undertaken a number of Community Outreach Projects (PDF 259.7KB) in connection with the Botany Groundwater Cleanup Project.  


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