Tighes Hill Community Launches Coal Dust Free Streets Project

Tighes Hill residents are today launching a survey to assess community attitudes towards coal dust, noise and the controversial fourth coal terminal proposed for Newcastle.

The 'Dust Free Streets Project' will see volunteers visit their neighbours and ask three questions about the city's coal industry.

The Dust Free Streets Project is a door-­to‐door community listening project, and involves residents visiting their neighbours to start conversations about the local impacts of the Newcastle coal industry.                  
“These conversations will let us know how residents in Tighes Hill feel about the current level of coal dust from uncovered trains and stockpiles, and attitudes toward T4,”said Tighes Hill Residents Action Group spokesperson Charlotte McCabe.            

Ms McCabe says Tighes Hill residents will be the first to be surveyed over the next two weeks because they come within hundreds of metres of the coal corridor.

She says the project will also move to other Newcastle suburbs early next year.

"We're genuinely looking for real community attitudes, so if someone feels strongly that they really want this Carrington coal loader to continue the way that it is in Carrington then that is the information that we will be recording on our survey," she said.

"We'll have to wait to see what the outcomes of the survey are, but if it's clearly one way or another then we'd hope that the Government would recognise this as a true record of community attitudes."

Ms McCabe says the survey results will go to Parliament as well as the Planning Assessment Commission, which is making a decision on the proposed T4 coal terminal.

"Newcastle's always been an industrial town but we feel like the community attitudes are changing towards that," she said.

"Maybe Government's just a little bit behind in recognising that we are starting to say, 'it's not OK for us to be exposing our kids' lungs to something that's really potentially quite harmful when a really simple measure could be done just covering stock piles, covering coal loaders'.

"We think that that's a reasonable request, if that's what the community ends up asking for."

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