We looked at lead levels in the following wetland areas in our 2017 study: 

  • Cairn Curran Reservoir 
  • Western District wetlands 
  • Kerang Lakes area. 

Our study: 

  • tested lead levels in water and sediment 
  • compared 2017 test results with national water and sediment quality standards 
  • compared 2017 results with those from a previous EPA study 
  • looked at possible environmental and human health risks from lead in water 
  • did not test lead levels in animals. 

What we found in our study of lead levels in Victoria’s wetlands

Sediment lead-level findings

Lead levels found in all tested wetlands’ sediment did not pose a risk to the environment or human health. Lead in Victorian wetlands study: Preliminary investigation (publication 1681) has more about the study’s results. 

Water lead-level findings

It was found that lead levels in all waters tested were safe for: 

  • human recreation 
  • livestock to drink. 

Two lakes had lead levels that would present a very low risk to human health if people drank their water:  

  • Lake Colongulac 
  • Lake Boort. 

These lakes are not normal drinking water sources for humans. 

Results of lead level water tests and ecosystem protection

There is an ‘ecosystem protection guideline value’ that protects 95 per cent of species in an ecosystem. An ecosystem refers to how plants and animals live together in their environment. 

Four wetlands did not meet the ecosystem guideline:  

  • Lake Colongulac 
  • Lake Colac 
  • Lake Boort 
  • Cairn Curran Reservoir. 

This means lead levels in the water could pose a risk to ecosystem health. 

Lead in Victorian wetlands study: Preliminary investigation (publication 1681) has more about the results. 

Read next

Lead levels in Cairn Curran Reservoir 

Lead levels in Cairn Curran Reservoir: EPA’s role 

Reviewed 29 May 2020