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Newcastle community environment committee to discuss Hunter Estuary study

Newcastle - environment

Nine members of the Newcastle Community Consultative Committee on the Environment (NCCCE) will meet on 23 August to discuss matters of concern in the Newcastle area.

The committee will discuss the importance of the Hunter Estuary study, which aims to develop a series of strategies to improve and protect the condition of the Hunter Estuary wetlands into the future.

The estuary includes all tidal waters of the Hunter River and its tributaries and is home to internationally important shorebirds. City of Newcastle says the estuary is subject to a range of pressures from mining, agriculture, industry and urbanisation.

Also on the agenda is the impact of water pollution, ash dams and transport pollutants in the Newcastle local government area.

Chair John Tate says the committee gives the Newcastle community an opportunity to raise any environmental and impact issues associated with nearby industrial activities.

“Since 2011, the committee has been advising the environment minister, the EPA (Environmental Protection Authority) and other relevant NSW Government agencies on matters of environmental concern to the Newcastle community,” Tate said.

“It also helps local industry understand the community’s concerns.

“The committee has members representing key interests in the lower Hunter … these members are very active in Newcastle across community-led organisations.”

Newcastle’s bid to reduce its environmental impact was boosted with a recent announcement that it will be home to a future $40 million regional Materials Recovery Facility (MRF), part of a $600 million national rollout of recycling infrastructure.

Representatives of the NSW EPA, including Director Regulatory Operations Adam Gilligan, and Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) will join Monday’s meeting.

“Already this year, the committee has provided feedback to the EPA about air quality, coal dust management on Kooragang Island, and ammonium nitrate manufacture, storage and transport in the Newcastle area,” Gilligan said.

 

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