Skip to content

Senate inquiry’s exposure of major shortfalls with Bellarine cancer cluster analysis triggers new scientific study

Liberal Senator for Victoria Sarah Henderson says she is very pleased that Victoria’s Chief Health Officer, Professor Brett Sutton, has agreed to extend the scope of the Victorian Government’s analysis of cancer data in Barwon Heads and surrounds.

During a public hearing before the Senate inquiry into a possible cancer cluster on the Bellarine, Senator Henderson said it was a major embarrassment that the Victorian Government’s analysis had excluded investigating two decades of data.

In evidence today, Professor Roger Milne of the Cancer Epidemiology Division of the Cancer Council of Victoria said that he had only investigated cancer data from 2001 on behalf of the Victorian Government.

Many of the cases which local residents fear are linked with the City of Greater Geelong’s mosquito spraying program date back to the early 1980’s when the program began.

“As I stated today, there were very major shortfalls in the Victorian Government’s analysis of a possible cancer cluster.  How can this analysis be credible when some two decades of data has been excluded?”

“Ross Harrison of Discovery 3227 gave some very damning evidence about the deficiencies of the scientific analysis and the conclusions that there was nothing to see here.

“On behalf of the Victorian Government, I am pleased that Professor Sutton has agreed to extend the study to cover the period 1985 – 2001.”

The Victorian Government found there was not any higher rate of breast or liver cancer, leukaemia, multiple myeloma, brain cancers or non-Hodgkin lymphoma in Ocean Grove and Barwon Heads.

“Already I have received some very positive feedback about this decision.  As we committed to do, this inquiry is shining a light on what happened during this period.  The full truth must be told.”


1 May 2020.

Share this