The fate of thousands of tonnes of toxic waste in Southland is up in the air, after months of searching for a solution.
At least 22,000 tonnes of smelter waste has been stockpiled around Southland since the processing company Taha International went into liquidation 18 months ago.
The waste was partially processed into a product called Ouvea Premix, but was never finished into fertiliser as Taha had promised.
10,000 tonnes is stored in one-tonne bags in the former Mataura paper mill, which is right next to the Mataura river.
Liquidators have since been trying to figure out how to dispose of the waste.
Today, one of the liquidators, Rhys Cairns, said a solution was found, which involved moving the oxide residue overseas to be disposed of.
But Mr Cairns said the several million dollars required to move it hasn’t been found.
The disposal was now the responsibility of the storage site’s landlords, as well as central and local government, he said.