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Coal dust health concerns for Mackay

Coal dust choking the Hunter Valley

The issue of the health impacts of coal dust has been raised again, this time in the State Parliament.

Vaughn Johnson, LNP Member for Gregory, spoke in Queensland Parliament last night saying that “coal dust will be a worse health story than asbestos

Whilst Mr Johnson’s comments were in regard to communities with neighbouring coal mines who’s plight we are sympathetic to, the Mackay-Whitsunday Greens agree and are concerned with the health impacts from dust created by the Hay Point, Dalrymple Bay and proposed Dudgen Point coal port cluster (planned capacity of 300 million tonnes per year) only 12kms up wind of the city of Mackay.

“Evidence shows that there are dire health impacts on humans from coal dust.” branch spokesperson and candidate for Whitsunday Jonathon Dykyj said today.

“With the prevailing south-easterly winds here we should be looking closely at what it means to have one of the world’s largest coal ports on our door step.

“At present there is only one station to monitor for the critical particulate matter of 2.5 microns for our entire coastal region.” Mr Dykyj said.

“Coal dust has been shown to have links to cancer and heart disease amongst other health impacts.

“This is why we are calling on the State Government to improve this by implementing a network of monitoring stations for particulate matter 2.5 microns at ports and mines so that we can get a clearer picture of the amounts of dangerous dust falling on the city, surrounding areas and regional towns.”

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