New Website Unearths Victoria’s Past To Protect Our Future

The Andrews Labor Government has launched a new online tool to help Victorians identify and investigate the quality of land and groundwater on their properties.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio said the Victoria Unearthed site would help property owners identify past uses of their land, to help them better understand the history of the site.

Victorians can now enter an address, suburb, town or area into the searchable map and access information related to potential historical or existing contamination for that address.

Victoria Unearthed includes data about land and groundwater that’s been brought together in the one place for the first time,

Victoria Unearthed also includes over 160,000 historical business listings from directories dating back to the 1890s – digitised for the first time from hard copies preserved by State Library Victoria.

As well as providing a valuable resource for historians, these historical business listings from old phone books can help Victorians understand more about potential contamination risks posed by past business activities.

Further investigation will be required to determine the precise condition of the land or groundwater on each site.

The Victoria Unearthed website is part of the Labor Government’s record $182.4 million investment to overhaul the state’s Environment Protection Authority.

Other actions include stronger powers for the environmental regulator and initiatives like the Preliminary Risk Screen pilot, which is testing a faster, more cost-effective approach to assessing sites that have a low to medium potential for contamination.

Victoria Unearthed, and further information on the tool, is available at environment.vic.gov.au/victoria-unearthed

Quotes attributable to Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio

“We’re making sure that Victorians are better protected than ever before from issues such as contamination.”

“This website will help people know the real story about what’s underneath their properties – with handy information right at their fingertips.”