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Introduction

The Northland Regional Council is responsible for the management and collection of waste hazardous substances and the monitoring of contaminated sites throughout Northland. In addition the Council on behalf of the Department of Labour undertakes inspections of workplaces storing and using hazardous substances and provides a 24/7 response to incidents involving hazardous substances incidents. For more details. see the Council's performance targets for Hazardous Waste and Contaminated Site Management.

In the 2005-2006 financial year approximately six tonnes of waste hazardous substances were collected from throughout the Northland Region, of which 900 kilograms were Persistent Organic Pollutants (POP's). This is significantly lower than the 14 tonnes of waste hazardous substances compares collected in 2004-2005. The Regional Council's stockpile of intractable wastes, including POP's, was disposed of in 2004-2005. Since 1993, 59 tonnes of waste hazardous substances have been collected and recycled or disposed of.

Photo from the closed Pohe Island landfill in Whangarei.The now closed Pohe Island landfill in Whangarei.

During 2005-2006 10 sites listed on the contaminated sites database were visited and inspected. Work has been delayed on developing a consistent approach to the management of contaminated sites in New Zealand.

The Regional Council carries out monitoring of both operational and closed landfills within the region to check for compliance with consent conditions. The monitoring results showed that landfills in Northland are having minimal impact on the receiving water quality. With the closure of Pohe Island landfill there is now only three operational landfills in Northland. See solid waste management for more information.

Although the Regional Council has no performance target related to reducing the amount of waste being disposed off in landfills, the Council does have in place a Waste Minimisation Strategy and encourages industry, businesses and households to reduce their waste production.

Photo of the new Resource Recovery Park on Rewarewa Road which now accepts all refuse and recycling for the Whangarei District.The new Resource Recovery Park on Rewarewa Road which now accepts all refuse and recycling for the Whangarei District.