Clearing the air – why Australia urgently needs effective national air pollution laws

May 21, 2014

Over 3000 Australians a year die from long-term and short term exposure to air pollution. It affects the health of thousands of others, as well as harming the natural environment and increasing greenhouse emissions.

Air pollution is an environmental justice issue. Communities that live near a pollution source suffer disproportionate impacts. That’s why we are working to achieve strong, national laws to regulate air pollution.

Current laws do not adequately protect Australians from air pollution. Transport air pollution in our cities is increasing, affecting millions of people. Our laws also fail to address problems in pollution hotspots where standards are often exceeded.  That means communities living near coal mines and coal fired power stations, industrial facilities, and major transport corridors are regularly exposed to unsafe levels of pollutants.  They pay disproportionately for resources used by our whole community.

Monitoring and enforcement of current laws is weak or non-existent. The Commonwealth and States are failing to protect the health of our communities and our environment from the harmful effects of air pollution.

New national laws are needed to protect our health.

Environmental Justice Australia is working with community groups, experts and environmental advocacy groups to achieve national laws that reduce air pollution levels and safeguard clean air for all Australians.

View report Clearing the air: Why Australia urgently needs effective national air pollution laws (PDF 1.6MB)

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