The company which sparked a furore at the old copper slag dump at Primbee is having its licence revoked, the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) said.
But more than seven months after landclearing work on Boxing Day caught neighbours' attention, Wollongong City Council says it's unable to say if the works were a breach of the approval conditions.
The EPA is revoking the licence because slag dumping is neither necessary not permitted, and after the owner revealed plans to bring in "alternative" waste not permitted under the licence.
They must now focus on rehabilitation and ensuring no leakage from the site.
Primbee residents reacted fiercely when they saw works taking place at the site, which for many years took waste for dumping from the Port Kembla copper smelter, on Boxing Day and subsequent days.
They were worried the topsoil which had been in place to "cap" the slag waste was being disturbed, risking leaching contaminates into the wetlands.
The site is next door to the Korrongulla Wetlands nature reserve owned by the Council, an annex of the Wollongong Botanic Garden.
It is now owned by Mimosa Rehabilitations, a company registered in Lansvale in southwest Sydney limited by $120 in shares, which bought the land in November 2022.
The Environment Protection Authority has moved to revoke Mimosa's pollution licence, saying it is not longer needed for the activities covered.
This came after EPA officials met with Mimosa owners and heard about plans to bring in more waste.
"The EPA wrote to the licensee to prepare and submit a scoping report to describe the activities to be undertaken at the premises and the proposed future use of the site," its notice states.
"The scoping report [submitted] proposed a number of activities for the premises including, but not limited to, the use of virgin excavated natural material to cover areas of exposed copper slag, and the proposed emplacement of alternative wastes not permitted to be received at the premises."
The EPA asked Mimosa to surrender its licence and when was told it would not, took action to revoke it.
Mimosa Rehabilitations and its principals have not responded to the Mercury's requests for comment.
They must now prepare a closure plan detailing how they will ensure no environmental harm is caused after closure, and what rehabilitation steps will take place.
In January Wollongong Greens councillor Cath Blakey said the pollution licence shouldn't be able to hang around "like a zombie".
The EPA said a site audit in October 2021 concluded the contamination was "not adversely impacting" ground and surface water.
Copper slag waste generated by the Port Kembla copper smelter ceased following the closure of the smelter in 2003. The smelter was demolished in 2014.