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Media Release: Beating Air Pollution Critical for World Environment Day

04 June 2019

Tackling air pollution is the theme for United Nations World Environment Day on June 5. Air pollution affects nine out of ten people worldwide and causes seven million premature deaths annually.

The major sources of air pollution are transport, energy generation and agriculture, especially methane from livestock. The burning of waste in open air and build up of organic waste in landfills also contributes to the issue.

Mackay Conservation Group campaigner, Emma Barrett, says that air pollution is a solvable issue.

“When we take actions to tackle air pollutants we see almost immediate improvements in air quality.

“Mackay is in a great position, we still have good air quality and we can start planning for our region to maintain it. That way we will avoid the serious health effects of air pollutants that are affecting other communities.

“Governments, councils, businesses and individuals can all take action to reduce air pollution. In urban environments decreasing traffic congestion and increasing the access to footpaths and bikeways encourages people to leave the car at home and ride or walk.

“At home, you can compost your organic waste to stop the buildup of greenhouse gases in landfills.

Ms Barrett said that governments must start using cleaner sources of energy for electricity production to prevent dangerous levels of air pollution in the form of greenhouse gases.

“The UN has identified that coal-burning power plants are a major contributor to poor air quality in many countries. Queensland still has active coal-fired power plants and by exporting thermal coal, we are also passing on poor air quality to other countries.”



Emma Barrett,  0437 742 747

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