Local committees continue their work for the environment

The NSW Environment Protection Authority’s (EPA) Newcastle Community Consultative Committee on the Environment and Upper Hunter Air Quality Advisory Committee have reconvened for their eighth year, with the new committees meeting for the first time.

Chair of both groups and former Newcastle Lord Mayor John Tate said the committees play an important role in ensuring information on the environment particularly relevant to the Upper Hunter and Newcastle areas is discussed with community, local and state government, and industry representatives.

“The meetings provide the members with a chance to contribute and then pass information and updates back to their communities, through their own networks,” he said.   

“The two committees have been working with government to monitor and assess air quality performance and environmental issues for their communities since 2011. This has included hearing from experts on the health impacts of air pollution, considering community attitudes to wood smoke and reviewing the operation of the air quality monitoring networks.

“I’m delighted that we have both some new and some familiar faces on these two important committees,” Mr Tate said.

“The committees both met for the first time in March, having been reappointed for a further two years.  We will be looking at ongoing and emerging environmental issues in the Newcastle and Upper Hunter regions including air quality and industry regulation.

“I’m pleased to continue chairing both of these forums between the EPA, the community and industry through which we see great advocacy for our communities.”

Committee members are listed below; the committee’s next meeting will be the quarterly winter session.

Upper Hunter Air Quality Advisory Committee members
John Tate (Chair)
Diane Gee (Community)
Thomas Green, (Community)
John Krey (Community)
Geoffrey Sharrock (Minister for Environment’s appointed community representative)
Dr Craig Dalton (NSW Health)
Mark Scandrett (Muswellbrook Council)
Cr Danny Thompson (Singleton Council)
Cr Wayne Bedggood (Upper Hunter Council)
Leah Cook (Dept. of Planning & Environment)
John Watson (Industry)
Matthew Parkinson (Industry)
Andrew Speechly (Industry)
Dr Catherine Chicken (Industry)
Mitchell Bennett (EPA)
Matt Riley (Office of Environment and Heritage)

Newcastle Community Consultative Committee on the Environment
John Tate (Chair)
Chris Tola (Community)
Keith Craig (Community)
Rick Banyard (Minister for Environment’s appointed community representative)
Craig Dalton (NSW Health)
Thomas Levick (Environment representative)
Trudie Larnach, (Industry)
Sheree Woodroffe (Industry)
Keith Wilks (Industry)
Mark Manning (Newcastle City Council)
Karen Marler (EPA)
Matt Riley (Office of Environment and Heritage)

More information on the committees including meeting minutes and seasonal air quality reports completed by the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) are available via the below links.

Upper Hunter reports: https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/working-together/community-engagement/community-news/upaq-advisory-committee

Newcastle reports: https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/working-together/community-engagement/community-news/newcastle-community-consultative-committee