Bore water tested at the site of the Cougar Energy plant near Kingaroy, Queensland has been found to be under permissible limits for levels of benzene and toluene.
The company's pilot Underground Coal Gasification plant 220 km north west of Brisbane was forced to shut down when traces of benzene and toluene were found in ground water near the site. A neighboring property was also affected.
However the cancer causing chemicals are not at dangerous levels as earlier believed. The Department of Environment and Resource Management or DERM director general John Bradley said that 10 bores had been re-tested on Tuesday and Wednesday.
As per Mr. Bradley the chemicals show levels which are within drinking water guidelines. The laboratory tests showed that the benzene which was detected at the Cougar Energy plant was within the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines. Plus the low levels of toluene detected at the plant of two parts per billion was well within the guideline of 800 parts per billion.
Toluene was also detected at just one other bore outside the plant. Farmers are still unhappy about the results and intend to send a formal deputation to Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Minister Stephen Robertson.