A week of poor air quality for the Upper Hunter

POOR: The Upper Hunter Air Quality Network monitors on Friday August 9 do not make for pleasant reading.

POOR: The Upper Hunter Air Quality Network monitors on Friday August 9 do not make for pleasant reading.

The Upper Hunter Air Quality Network monitors have been busy during the past week with 27 alerts being issued from Wednesday, August 7 until lunchtime Tuesday, August 13.

Of those 21 were for monitors in the Singleton Local Government Area the other six being recorded at either Muswellbrook or Aberdeen.

Strong north westerly winds across the region wiped up dust but its must be noted there were no alerts for Merriwa the most western monitor in the network.

Camberwell has now recorded more than 40 air quality alerts so far this year as PM10 levels exceed national standards. On Friday the village's monitor recorded PM10 levels in the hazardous range above 100. With one recording PM10 levels at 198 when above 50 is considered poor.

The NSW Environment Protection Authority stated they had been contacted by members of the community regarding dust in the vicinity of the Warkworth Mine in the Singleton area.

The EPA were investigating and they sent an officer to the area on the morning August 8.

Bulga Milbrodale Progress Association president, John Krey was just one of the residents to contact the EPA last week to voice his concern about air pollution.

"I was told they could do nothing and advised to stay inside," he said.

"This simply isn't good enough we need a local inspector based in the Upper Hunter that is monitoring this pollution which is impacting everyone's health. That way they can see first hand where the pollution is being generating. Then we need hefty fines on the polluters."

Mr Krey was also concerned by a push from proponents of the United Wambo mine to exclude the village of Bulga from being included in their consultation process.

Uinted Wambo is currently being reviewed by the Independent Planning Commission. In a transcript of the Commissioners meeting with Singleton Council, the Council's representatives, suggest that move would be acceptable to them.

Mr Krey said Bulga residents must be consulted on the proposal as they like all the other nearby villages will be impacted by the development of another open cut mine.

"The prevailing northerly winds will send even more dust over the village and own Association strongly object to being excluded," he said.