Penneshaw (Christmas Cove)
EPA assessment area
In June 2023, the EPA commenced an investigation into the cause of recurring petroleum hydrocarbon contaminated water seeping out of the embankment at Christmas Cove.
Samples collected from the investigation wells confirmed groundwater is contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons within the Penneshaw EPA Assessment Area. These are a group of chemicals typically found in fuels such as kerosene, petrol, diesel and motor oil.
Historical leaks that occurred over a long period of time are the likely sources of the groundwater contamination. These may be related to underground fuel storage tanks and/or related infrastructure, such as pipes and bowsers.
The EPA is continuing to work with the Kangaroo Island Council on the managing the oily discharge observed at the embankment.
The EPA is reviewing the available information to determine whether a groundwater prohibition area should be established. If a groundwater prohibition area is considered necessary, the community will be consulted on the proposal separately.