A PROMISE made to the residents of western Sydney by Premier Barry O'Farrell has been broken.
In 2010, Mr O'Farrell promised not to turn the west into a dumping ground for the state's richer suburbs.
But documents released this month revealed that 5000 tonnes of "radiologically impacted soil" from a uranium ore processing plant in Hunters Hill, would be stored at the SITA landfill site on Elizabeth Drive.
The site is the only one in NSW authorised to store high-level restricted solid waste — but cannot legally hold radioactive waste.
Shadow environment minister Luke Foley said the feasibility report into disposal options for the waste showed the government manipulated the data to avoid it being classified as radioactive.
In addition to the waste being stored locally, Mr Foley said the report also stated that a management and monitoring plan would need to be funded and implemented at the dumping site for the next 300 years.
"The O'Farrell government has manipulated the data that shows the waste is radioactive — so it can be sent to Kemps Creek," he said.
"The Premier's own experts confirm the government will need to provide the funding to monitor the radioactive waste sent to Kemps Creek until the 24th century.
"This decision says it all about Barry O'Farrell's real attitude to western Sydney.
The Parsons Brinckerhoff feasibility review states that radioactive material was detected at varying concentrations across the Hunters Hill site, with one of the samples exceeding the criteria for restricted solid waste.
It also states that the waste contains naturally occurring radioactive material, and the samples detected were not considered a "radioactive substance" as they did not meet the definition of a radioactive substance provided in clause 5 of the NSW radiation control regulation, 2003.
Mr Foley is not convinced.
The minister in charge of the project, Minister for Finance and Services and the Illawarra, Greg Pearce, said the former government failed to clear the waste, and now his government was getting on with the job.
"Waste from the Hunters Hill site will be thoroughly tested and relocated to a licensed landfill facility," he said.
"An independent auditor from the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation will monitor the process to ensure it is rigorous and safe.
"In the unlikely event that anything hazardous is found, it will be isolated and taken to the very secure storage facility operated by the Environment Protection Authority, which has been taking similar waste from the community for more than 20 years."
Once the process begins, all 5000 tonnes of waste will be stored at the SITA landfill within 12 months.