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20 - Mt Lyell Chemical Works Pump House

Mt Lyell Chemical Works Pump House

The Mt Lyell Chemical Works was established in Rocky Bay in 1910. They produced acids and superphosphate fertilisers for farming, which were essential for crop propagation, due to the lack of nutrients in Western Australian soils.

In 1927, they merged with Cumming Smith and Company, the only other fertiliser company in Western Australia.

British Petroleum (BP) acquired a third of the company in 1964, which led to the company changing their name to Cumming Smith British Petroleum (CSBP).

Five years later, the company moved to Kwinana. This was partially a result of pressure from the State Government to rid the area of any industrial sites as the nearby housing estates were expanding. They left behind extensive contamination of the soil from the heavy metals and chemical by-products used to manufacture fertilisers. Waste had also spilled into the river and the foreshore.

Upon a site clean-up and removal of the drainage systems, the site and surrounding area was sold to developers to build what is now, the housing estate overlooking the river in Mosman Park.

A wall of limestone was built into the site of the sandy cliffs to help stabilise the surrounding area from further erosion and risk of collapse. Waste water came down the outflow pipe located approximately 10 metres south from the wall.

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