Prior to the announcement more than $4 million would be spent to combat dust emissions at RG Tanna, Rob McDonald surveys what h
Prior to the announcement more than $4 million would be spent to combat dust emissions at RG Tanna, Rob McDonald surveys what h

Government pledges millions to combat coal dust in our port



THE QUEENSLAND Government's commitment to pour millions of dollars into combating dust emissions was music to the McDonalds' ears.

"It's certainly about time for that," Mrs McDonald said upon hearing the news.

"I think everyone in town will probably breathe a collective sigh of relief.

"(however)...they (also) need to look at positive ways of fixing the problem, rather than throwing money at it."

When yesterday's state budget was handed down, Treasurer Andrew Fraser announced $20.9 million had been set aside for "key initiatives at the Port of Gladstone", including $4.3 million for dust suppression measures at RG Tanna.

Modifications to the ship loading facilities at the Auckland Point terminals will also be made as part of the project.

Mr and Mrs McDonald have been vocal about dust problems at Gladstone Marina.

The pair believes coal dust travels from the nearby Gladstone Ports Corporation via northerly and north westerly winds, coating their vessel.

After years of controversy surrounding coal dust emissions, the Gladstone Marina residents said they were glad the people's concerns were being recognised.

"The people who have done all the work...and pushed and shoved to get this stuff happening should be congratulated," Mr McDonald said.

"I just hope they consider it as a long term proposition, not just a short term problem here."

Earlier this year, the port vowed to invest more than $10 million to minimise the impact of dust emissions after a damning report into the issue.

For more on the budget, see page 11.



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