Clean coal? Lake Macquarie power station cloaks residents with tonnes of toxic coal dust, sparking investigation 23/2/17

“We reported the pollution event immediately and look forward to a prompt investigation by the NSW EPA to stop and remedy this serious air pollution problem,” said Dr James Whelan, researcher with Environmental Justice Australia. Particle pollution from coal dust causes serious health impacts including respiratory and cardiovascular illness, asthma...

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International Energy Agency’s Air Pollution report acknowledges role of coal in air pollution deaths

The International Energy Agency (IEA) recommends national governments take strong urgent action to clean up pollution sources. Although indoor air pollution (from burning fuels indoors for cooking and heating in developing countries) kills slightly more people globally than outdoor pollution, in developed countries such as Australia, pollution from coal fired...

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New study triggers demands for air pollution control: Community and health groups respond

The NSW Environment Protection Authority will today release findings of a three-year study to characterise the source of particle pollution in Newcastle.1 The study was commissioned in response to community complaints about air pollution associated with coal export, chemical production and other industries in the Lower Hunter. Earlier this month,...

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Latest national air pollution data shows dangerous hikes in emissions

Just released annual air pollution data shows yet another hike in air pollution across Australia, with the coal industry the top contributor, indicating a failure of federal and state regulation which is creating a significant burden for community health and costing taxpayers an estimated $11-24.3 billion each year, according to...

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Air pollution in South East Queensland triggers public meeting; calls for expanded monitoring network and data access

The public meeting has been convened following a trebling of particle pollution from coal mining during the last 10 years and calls for an expansion of Queensland’s air pollution monitoring network. “There is no EPA monitoring in the entire Central Queensland coalfields – a region of more than one million...

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Hazelwood mine fire report: health recommendations welcome but prevention is better than cure

This part of the Inquiry looked at “short, medium and long term measures to improve the health of the Latrobe Valley communities having regard to any health impacts identified by the Board as being associated with the Hazelwood Coal Mine Fire”. “The Inquiry found that it was likely that there...

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Air pollution announcement ensures business as usual for polluters

Environmental Justice Australia has slammed today’s announcement of particle pollution limits by the environment ministers from around Australia. “With air pollution responsible for at least 3000 deaths each year in Australia, this response is simply not good enough. It does nothing to protect our health. It simply bows to the...

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Avoidable deaths caused by lax air pollution standards: Air pollution summit calls for a national Air Pollution Control Act and a national regulator

Health, community and environment groups meet tomorrow in Melbourne as part of their national clean air campaign. “Air pollution in Australia’s major cities, coal-mining regions, coal transport corridors, and communities near coal-fired power stations and motorways is causing avoidable deaths. Australians require a much stronger regulatory approach,” said Environmental Justice...

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Government plays to industry on vehicle emissions reforms

“The Prime Minister’s announcement of a joint minister industry forum to report on vehicle emissions standards in 2017 appears to be another delay tactic to appease business”, said Mr Hill. (“Government launches process for new vehicle emission standards”, The Australian, today).   “Putting industry in the lead on vehicle emissions...

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Brooklyn Fire Exposes Inadequate Monitoring of Toxic Air Pollution in Melbourne

"Melbourne has only three long-term air quality monitoring stations in Melbourne's inner west. This makes it very difficult for the EPA to pursue compliance or prosecution responses to preventable fires or other major air pollution events, without an urgent EPA response in real-time", said Mr Hill. "It appears unlikely that...

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Cover coal wagons: Enough studies, time to act

The report prompted community and environment groups to call on the NSW EPA to instruct the region’s coal industry to cover and wash coal wagons to protect community health. “Around the world, coal wagons are covered and washed to control dust emissions,” said Environmental Justice Australia Researcher Dr James Whelan....

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Hazelwood Mine Fire: Time for GDF-Suez and government to accept responsibility

Expert testimony at the Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry today made it clear that the fire had significantly affected the health of Latrobe Valley residents. “The expert’s findings convey a clear message that the coal mine fire has significantly affected the health of local residents, and probably caused deaths of people...

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Hazelwood Mine Fire: Hearings into deaths to commence

“These hearings are of huge importance to the people of the Latrobe Valley. The fact that the Hazelwood Mine Fire inquiry was reopened shows the health effects of coal air pollution are a serious concern of the community.” said Felicity Millner, Director of Litigation at Environmental Justice Australia, who are...

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Australians die while ministers delay action on air pollution

“Australians deserve strong laws to protect their right to breathe clean air,” said Environmental Justice Australia’s Director of Advocacy & Research Ms Nicola Rivers. “With air pollution killing 3000 Australians every year, and tens of thousands more suffering health effects, we urgently need strong national laws in the form of...

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Health and environment groups call for national Air Pollution Prevention Act to reverse dangerous increases in air pollution

The groups (1) are calling for an independent regulator to enforce national standards and ensure hefty penalties for polluters which breach pollution controls, as well as to ensure proper pollution monitoring and data collection. New analysis of the latest annual National Pollutant Inventory (NPI) data(2), and mapping of trends in...

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Backgrounder: National Pollutant Inventory data

Highlights Coal is the dominant source of PM10 emissions nationally.  During the last five years, coarse particle pollution (PM10) from coal mines has increased by 107%, primarily as a result of increased production from existing mines. Many coal fired power stations have increased their particle pollution. In Victoria’s Latrobe Valley,...

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Background brief on proposed changes to national air pollution standards

Environment Ministers released a draft proposal on 31 July 2014 for public comment. Public submissions to the consultation process closed in October 2014. The national standards are contained in the National Environment Protection Measure (Ambient Air Quality) (NEPM (AAQ)). The standards are made and varied by the Australia’s Environment Ministers...

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