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HUNTER coal trains do not produce more dust than other trains, a second round of coal wagon dust emissions has found.
The Australian Rail Track Corporation yesterday published the results of the testing conducted at Raymond Terrace Drive in Metford from November 30 2012 to January 2013.
It found loaded coal trains passing through the site did not have a stronger association with elevated particulate matter concentrations than other trains.
It did, however, reveal that average concentrations of total suspended particles and particulate matter associated with unloaded and loaded coal trains were higher compared to no trains.
Environment Protection Authority chairman and chief executive Barry Buffier said: “The EPA will not consider imposing additional requirements on industry, such as covering of coal loads, unless clear evidence becomes available which demonstrates the need for further studies or measures to control coal dust emissions from loaded coal trains.”
However, Coal Terminal Action Group spokesman James Whelan said the study did not address community concerns.
“The Environment Protection Authority instructed the ARTC to monitor particle pollution because community members wanted to know how much coal dust we’re being exposed to and how to control it, not because we wanted to know if there’s a difference between coal trains, freight trains and passenger trains,” Dr Whelan said.
The group will start fund-raising on Monday for a second coal dust study to monitor particle pollution.