PFAS National Environmental Management Plan 3.0

The National Environmental Management Plan for per- and poly-fluorinated substances (PFAS NEMP) version 3.0 has been released by the National Chemicals Working Group of the Heads of EPAs of Australia and New Zealand (HEPA) for public consultation.

The PFAS NEMP 3.0 builds on nationally agreed guidance and standards on the investigation, assessment, and management of PFAS wastes and contamination in the environment previously detailed in the PFAS NEMP 2.0, which was published in 2020.

NEMP 3.0 includes new and additional guidance and standards on priority areas as set out in Ancillary Document to the PFAS National Environmental Management Plan Version 2.0 from July 2020. Broadly, this resulted in the inclusion of:

  • Theme 1: The PFAS family – information surrounding international approaches to grouping of PFASs.
  • Theme 2: Guidance on ambient monitoring data collection and land use classifications to enable comparability.
  • Theme 3: Risk-based criteria and guidance for beneficial reuse of biosolids.
  • Theme 4: Guidance and standards around PFAS behaviour in soil, leaching and associated ecological and human health guidance.
  • Theme 5: New guidance on the management of risks associated with PFAS in resource recovery products.
  • Theme 6: Site-specific guidance related to:
    • The principles and approaches to remediation and management.
    • The management of construction water.
    • Guidance on estuarine, coastal, and marine sediments.

The PFAS NEMP 3.0 provides important information for the management of contaminated land, environments, and waste streams. The updated guidelines have significant ramifications for the waste, resource recovery, and circular economy sectors and provide positive steps towards the better management of PFAS within these industries as well as more broadly across Australia. 

Considering this, feedback on the PFAS NEMP 3.0 consultation draft is critical, and stakeholders are encouraged to review the document and complete an assessment of how it may impact your industry, business, or site.

At present, ADE Consulting Group is working with several businesses and industry associations to prepare coordinated and constructive responses to the PFAS NEMP 3.0 consultation draft. It is hoped that the provision of constructive feedback can result in the finalised NEMP 3.0 being suitably protective of human health and the environment, while ensuring the practicability of implementation and minimising adverse outcomes.

Your feedback is important and submissions close at 4pm AEDT on 20 December 2022. Please feel free to contact Dr. Matthew Askeland ( should you wish to discuss a coordinated response to the PFAS NEMP 3.0 for your business or industry association.

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