I have been trying to follow the stories about the gas leaks out of the closed landfill in Cranbourne. And the more I read, the more confused and perplexed I am about the entire situation. I mean, this is what I have gathered, so far,
1. The Council of Casey as well as the EPA opposed the building of houses too closed to the closed landfill. The developer Peet wanted land as close as 200m from the landfill to be subdivided for development. So, the Casey Council rejected the development plan.
2. The developer, Peet, appealed to VCAT and they were successful in having that decision overturned, with certain conditions attached (whatever they were, we don’t know).
3. So, now, there are houses built as close as 50 metres from the landfill, in the area known as the Brookland Greens Estate.
4. Methane gas has been leaking from the site for quite some time now. It is only in recent days that the situation had become quite bad.
5. So, the EPA has stepped in, and not quite ordered ( but encouraged) people to move out of their homes, and had installed monitors in homes.
6. Some residents had moved but some are staying put. The State Government are providing $8500 per household towards relocating the residents. Residents do not have to pay council rates up to a year.
7. Class action being considered by some residents, using the law firm, Slater & Gordon.
Like everyone living in Melbourne, we all want to know who is in charge of this whole mess. At the moment, nobody, because nobody wants to be blamed. Not the council, not the developer, not the EPA, and of course, not the residents.
I just have one hypothetical question: In the event of a fire, say, started in a house or on the street, accidentally, and the entire estate is almost destroyed, due in part, to the leaking methane. Will the insurance companies covering the house and content of all the households pay up? Surely, the insurance companies, are the best people, to find whom is to blame?
The Age “Questions over checks on gas leak estate”
Herald Sun’s “Cash help worth $8500 …”
Herald Sun’s “Probe into methane …”