Newcastle Greens today called for work on Port Waratah Coal Services’ T4 coal loader development to be immediately and indefinitely suspended in the light of today’s release of a health study finding accelerated cancer levels among workers at the company’s Kooragang Island coal facility.
The Greens Newcastle Lord Mayoral and Ward 4 candidate, John Sutton, said that PWCS and the state government must now act to guarantee the health of workers in the area, and resolve the serious health issues raised in the study.
“Amazingly, today’s public response to the study by PWCS doesn’t even refer to the implications of the study’s findings for the T4 proposal, despite the fact that the development is proposed on the same land as the former Kooragang Island industrial dump site.
“While the study doesn’t identify the specific reason for the accelerated cancer levels, it notes that the contaminants from land fill or chemicals at the former dump site could leach into the water used for wash down and dust suppression, which is stored in unlined holding ponds, and recommends engaging a health expert to recommend remediation measures.
“This has clear implications for the T4 development, and PWCS must acknowledge that,” Mr Sutton said.
“This latest revelation adds yet another concern to the already long list of reasons why T4 should not proceed.
“At the very least, out of regard for the health of its own workers, PWCS (in conjunction with the Newcastle Port Corporation) must now stop further work on the development unless and until this serious health issue has been resolved,” Mr Sutton said.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION OR COMMENT, CONTACT JOHN SUTTON (GREENS CANDIDATE FOR NEWCASTLE LORD MAYOR AND WARD 4) ON 04