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It’s an unremarkable service station on an unremarkable intersection in a suburb of Sydney.
But this station hides a secret. Just a few metres underfoot a plume of dangerous chemicals has been bleeding through the soil for 20 years. It has crept into the groundwater, travelled hundreds of metres under sporting fields, cemeteries and trophy homes before eventually finding a home under the pleasure craft and kayaks that glide up and down a popular river.
From ground level there’s little to betray the toxic history of the Sutherland service station. Over 60 years it’s been run by different owners, under different brands and policed by different government departments, all seemingly incapable of cleaning up the mess.