AECOM is providing clients with long-term PFAS solutions having worked on over 200 PFAS projects globally and managed two of Australia’s largest PFAS investigations.


What are PFAS?
Per- and Poly-Fluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) are persistent and bioaccumulative contaminants that are specifically engineered to be long-lived, highly soluble and very stable.

PFAS were commonly found in Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF) which has been used around the world for many years to supress liquid fuel fires. AFFF formulations that were historically used contained PFAS, variably including perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).
The industrial use of PFAS was common in the following industries:

  • Aviation
  • Defence
  • Oil & Gas
  • Property
  • Manufacturing

Why are PFAS a problem?

PFAS are highly soluble, mobile, persistent and bioaccumulative in the environment. In the early 2000s some Australian AFFF users identified, ahead of any published regulatory guidance, the potential adverse environmental impacts of AFFF and initiated Australian research into alternative products. It is now known that the historical use of AFFF-containing PFAS has resulted in a contamination legacy with currently unknown human health and environmental impacts.
Limited toxicological understanding on how these “emerging contaminants” impact human health and the environment means there is ongoing research across the world to better understand the potential negative impacts. PFOS is listed on the Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP) Register of the Stockholm Convention and PFOA has been recommended to be listed.

How can AECOM help?
AECOM assists clients in the identification, management and remediation of PFAS. AECOM has been helping clients globally tackle PFAS contamination since 2001, working on over 100 Australian PFAS projects, and 200 globally. PFAS sites have complex technical, community, and legal issues. They receive extensive media coverage and require intergovernmental involvement to agree pathways forward. AECOM has experience navigating clients through the appropriate technical and regulatory processes to find an appropriate solution for the unique circumstances of their site.
We draw on global and local experience and work with clients to:

  • Deliver complex PFAS contamination projects exploring innovative solutions.
  • Reduce the risks presented from their site, from our approach that integrates our understanding of technical requirements, timeline imperatives, reputational risk, legislative requirements and budget constraints.
  • Deploy responsive and cost effective local office resources for field work, community engagement and project management tasks, supplemented with national technical leaders in hydrogeology, risk assessment, toxicology, community engagement and PFAS remediation.
  • Provide clients with value for money due to our carefully tailored investigation program that focuses on key long term objectives all based on National Environment Protection Measure(NEPM) compliant processes.

PFAS Projects

AECOM is focused on delivering long-term solutions for our client, for every project, big or small. Our team has recently delivered the following projects:

RAAF Base Williamtown, Environmental Investigation, Department of Defence Army Aviation Centre Oakey (AACO), PFAS Investigations, Department of Defence Former Training College, Fiskville, Country Fire Authority (CFA)