American activist Erin Brockovich has warned all levels of government in Australia to act swiftly to prevent the spread of PFAS chemical contamination, with more affected sites coming to light.
More than 60 sites in Queensland are believed to be contaminated by PFAS A university campus and a residential development are being built on two of the contaminated sites Erin Brockovich says Australia is behind in dealing with the issue
ABC News has obtained a list of more than 60 locations identified by authorities in one state alone believed to be contaminated by the synthetic compounds.
They include a prime parcel of riverfront real estate in Brisbane slated for a high-end residential development and a university campus currently under construction to the north of the city.
PFAS chemicals are found in firefighting foam and other products manufactured for their resistance to heat, water and oil.
Authorities overseas, such as the US Environmental Protection Agency, have found PFOA and PFOS chemicals (a type of PFAS) can cause reproductive and developmental, liver and kidney, and immunological effects in laboratory animals.
Queensland authorities said PFAS can persist for a long time in the environment and tend to accumulate in the bodies of animals and people.
A study is currently underway by the Australian National University looking at the health impacts on people who have come into contact with high levels of the chemical.
What you need to know about PFAS