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Opencast Mining: Health Hazards

Volume 506: debated on Monday 1 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what research his Department and its predecessors have conducted on the effects on public health of opencast mining since 1997. (319303)

We have conducted one piece of research. In 1999 the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne prepared a report “Do Particulates from Opencast Coal Mining Impair Children's Respiratory Health?” for the Department of Health and the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions.

The findings of this report were fed into the Government's policy on dust from mineral workings and associated operations, which is set out in Annex 1 to Minerals Policy Statement 2 “Controlling and Mitigating the Environmental Effects of Minerals extraction in England”. This annex was published in 2005.