Singleton is one of the worst polluted towns

Social, legal and health issues related to unrestrained expansion of coal mines in Australia.

Singleton is one of the worst polluted towns

Postby HVPA_research » Sun Jul 04, 2010 9:54 am

Pollution index reveals the hidden costs of electricity
by JENNIE CURTIN, Sydney Morning Herald,April 3, 2010

THE price Australia pays for its reliance on coal-fired electricity is highlighted by the release of the National Pollutants Inventory.

Coalmines and coal-fired power stations again featured among the big polluters, emitting millions of kilograms of pollutants into the atmosphere, with the potential to be a hazard to both health and the environment.

In NSW, the Hunter Valley and the Lithgow regions rated as the state's most polluted areas because of the number of coal-based activities there. Singleton is one of the worst towns, surrounded by at least seven mines which together produced more than 18 million kilograms of dust, 7.4 million kilograms of nitrogen oxides and 4.9 million kilograms of carbon monoxide in the 2008-09 year.

nhalation of low levels of carbon monoxide can cause headache, dizziness, light-headedness and fatigue. Nitrogen oxides, which can be inhaled or absorbed through the skin, may irritate eyes, nose, throat and lungs. And inhaled dust is also an irritant to the eyes, throat and lungs.

The figures also reveal the state's six largest power stations - Bayswater, Liddell, Mt Piper, Eraring, Wallerawang and Vales Point - produced more than 160 million kilograms of nitrogen oxides, 5 million kilograms of carbon monoxide and a massive 235 million kilograms of sulphur dioxide, which also irritates eyes and throat and can cause headaches and anxiety.
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