Wollongong City Council will review its use of herbicides including RoundUp, amid public concern over the aerial spraying of the chemical over Port Kembla beach and Hill 60.
Hundreds of people had reacted angrily to the Mercury's report that the herbicide glysophate - which has been blamed for causing cancer by courts in the US - will be sprayed from the air at Port Kembla and Bass Point. Some started petitions.
A spokesperson said the council "prioritises hand weeding" and the use of edgers and whipper snippers.
"We know there is community concern about the use of herbicides as a weed suppressant option, and council staff are reviewing alternative products and weed treatment methods for weed control in public areas across the city," the spokeswoman said.
"We will provide an update to the community as soon as possible on the outcome of this review.
"The focus of this review is to ensure we're meeting the expectation of our community in terms of best practice and maintenance of public spaces, and that we're using the most effective alternative options for weed control in public areas."
Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery has defended council's involvement in the spraying, saying he had been told in a briefing that it was safe.
He also mentioned a review, but this appeared limited to "double check whether IDWA adheres to guidelines".
Cr Bradbery said the herbicide would not be sprayed on residential areas. Residential areas, Port Kembla Public School, and the Five Islands Secondary College are directly adjacent to Hill 60.
Herbicide "drift" has been identified as a persistent problem with aerial spraying. But IDWA chief weeds officer David Pomery has said spraying would only occur when weather conditions are appropriate. If it's windy or wet, the spraying will be postponed.
Council uses guidelines from the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority, which says glyphosate products are safe to use, as per the label instructions.
The Illawarra District Weeds Authority, which does the spraying, is part of the Illawarra Shoalhaven Joint Organisation of councils.
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