Last updated on 07/02/2020

New South Wales (NSW) inquiry launches into health impacts of bushfire smoke and drought

Asthma Australia welcomes the NSW Legislative Assembly Inquiry that has been established ‘into the health impacts of exposure to poor air quality resulting from bushfires and drought’.

This Inquiry will investigate the health impacts that this public health emergency has had on people with asthma and higher risk groups, and to investigate how the NSW Government can improve air quality reporting and measuring.

These are two key advocacy areas for Asthma Australia and as the peak health body, we will be engaging with the Inquiry Committee to share the stories of the impacts of poor air quality on the 830,000 people affected by asthma in NSW.

We are very pleased to see some progress already with the NSW Government now reporting hourly averages of pollutants PM2.5 and PM10 available on the AQI website.

There is no doubt this bushfire crisis and prolonged drought have presented all Australians with an unprecedented set circumstances, including our governments and emergency services.

During this time, Asthma Australia has continuously been present, providing information and supporting our community with as much information as we had available to us.

We have stressed the dangers of bushfire smoke exposure to our community, to governments and to media during this crisis.

We launched a survey on 20 December 2019 to investigate and gather information on just how people with asthma were being affected. We are currently analysing this data and it will be incredibly important for building a strong submission for this Inquiry and for our work engaging governments across Australia.

We encourage everyone to speak up too. The Terms of Reference are available here. We will be preparing templates and guides for people wanting to provide a submission to the Inquiry to make it easier for people to get involved.

If you would like to help us to continue our work representing people with asthma, please donate to our organisation by clicking here.