Koppers Australia today announced that the first phase of the clean-up at the Port of Portland is expected to be completed before the end of this week.
The task was approximately 80% complete yesterday (Sunday 15th) with some 300 tonnes of pitch having been successfully taken from the site.
During the clean up trucks have been transporting the pitch to Koppers facilities in Newcastle, where it is being remelted back into pitch stock for reuse.
The company has also advised that the reinforcing around the other tank, which is still in service, has been a success as the Koppers ship unloaded pitch and filled this tank just after Easter without any issues. Reinforcing the tank was precautionary work to further ensure the safety and security of the facility.
The clean up has posed minimal risk for the community and has been undertaken by highly skilled professionals using specifically designed equipment. Progress to date has been highly satisfactory and has met and exceeded all regulatory requirements.
Close communications are being maintained with all stakeholders including WorkSafe, the EPA, Glenelg Shire Council and the local community.