Friday, February 11, 2011

Is it a 'Cause for Concern?'

The NSW coal mining industry has enjoyed a period of extraordinary growth over the past few years 
'A wise man should consider that health is the greatest of human blessings, and learn how by his own thought to derive benefit from his illnesses.'

Coal prices have risen on the back of increased demand from China. Higher prices have stimulated investment in the NSW coal industry. There have been a number of new mining developments, or major expansions, to existing mines. Several of these are in close proximity in the Hunter Valley. Is this then a cause for concern?

I do not believe that my breast cancer has anything to do with  the mining industry. I do believe that there are potential health risks associated with mining. I will go so far as to say though that there does appear to be a cancer 'cluster' right here in this area with its magnificent views. Looking across the Allyn Valley, at times, we see the haze from the mines. Our home is not in close proximity to any of the homes on the six adjoining properties. Being a rural area, we live on 67 hectares, or almost 200 acres for those not familiar with the metric system. Of the six adjoining properties, at least one person in each of five of them has, or has had, cancer. Last year we attended funeral services for two of them. Although Haydn has owned the land for 20 years, we have been residents for less than three years

Apart from information gleaned from local papers, I have done no research into potential health risks associated with mining. I did find it interesting that the couple that looked at the property last weekend stated emphatically that, although the husband works in the mines, he will not live anywhere near them. After their first inspection, they have said they can see themselves living here.

My relationship with Haydn is not an issue; fortunately the lines of communication have been opened. There has been a huge shift! At 64 years of age, he is prepared to sell acreage that he has lovingly tended for 20 years in order to give me the opportunity to return to the city. This would enable me to spend time with friends and seek treatment as necessary. Is it the right thing to do at this stage? The more interest in the farm the people show, the higher my stress levels. I have shed tears of frustration this past week knowing that Haydn was put in the same position many years ago when his first wife became ill. I do not believe it is right for him to go through it again!

A huge 'Thank You' for your response to my previous post and your compliments on our home and view.


stonepost said...

"Warning, this product is known to the state of California to cause cancer." Hi, Cheryl, this is the message on all my welding supplies.
Did I get my cancer from welding? I don't know. Would I do it again? I am doing it now, returned to my shop and creating art from steel, something I love so very much. I would not purposely live in a "cancer cluster" but I couldn't change my life style to live longer. If I had to chose I would take shorter and doing what I love versus longer and doing something I didn't like. It used to be that people just didn't live long enough to get cancer. They died much younger from working themselves to death.
Now, all that said, I am not in favor of strip mining and destroying the environment just to get a cheaper utility rate or some do-dad imported from overseas!

diane b said...

The whole mining business is a complex issue. We have huge mines in Queensland some even got flooded and were out of action for a while. One wouldn't think it too healthy to have coal dust in your lungs. I think it is wonderful that you and Haydn can talk things over again. I think it is the best thing for you to move closer to medical care. Even though Haydn might be coping well on the acreage at the moment , the day will come where it would all be too much for him as well so he's just moving a little earlier than he probably would. Hopefully he will find something to do do in the city. Maybe he needs a shed to tinker in.

Carole said...

Hi Chez,

Ask yourself if Haydn is happy to move off the farm..have you forced him into this position, have you manipulated it, have you made completely unreasonable demands?

If no, then you must just accept that, whether he's done a similar thing before in the past or not, right now (forget the past...right now is what matters) this is what he has decided is the right thing to do.

Drop the guilt and concentrate on planning your new lives in the city environment.

Big hugs to you xxx

Angel-Star said...

may you be still, find the calm place, deep within your soul, and know, with wisdom and certainty, the step to take each day

Diane Rodgers said...

Hi Cheryl,

The mining thing there ...who knows? It can't be a good thing to breathe into your bodies....all industry brings some alarm to us with it's pollutants... cost of progress...sad but true.

It is fantastic you and Hayden have opened up to one another lately! Trust the conversations you have shared and please trust Hayden to his word. He would not move if he didn't want matter what his reasons may be for saying he will do it..he is willing ...It is always hard to make a huge change...mixed emotions and the good and the bad of it all.

You have always had that gift of "Simply Knowing" ...intrinsic knowledge I think you have told what it is saying to you and go with it sweetie! You have had months to think and rethink ... I feel you will both find your way to happiness and fulfillment moving to the city! A new adventure! Hayden can always buy another farm if he wants to!

Leave the past in the past and go for living your life today! :)

Love you sweet friend...

Chez said...

StonePost, I do think I asked you previously about the quality of steel from China. Haydn's son-in-law says it is poor quality.
I hear what you are saying and actually agree with you. I believe, personally, there are more complex issues in my case.
I simply state the facts, as I know them, on these pages as a record for future generations. Will they be interested? Who knows!
It does appear our resource boom has contributed to apparent ease of managing to negotiate the Global Economic Crisis without too much of a problem.

Chez said...

Diane b we know mining is huge in Australia. You will probably agree with my comment to StonePost regarding the GEC.
Thankfully, Haydn is happy to discuss important issues, providing I get him at the 'right' time.
Watch this space for the latest. DDiscussions took place and decisions were made today...

Chez said...

Carole I stepped back allowing Haydn to be totally responsible for any decisions. After all, this farm has been his for 20 years and although we have been together for 15 I believe it is rightfully his. He is such a 'Steptoe' I cannot imagine him moving.
As I have mentioned to Diane b things have changed from yesterday.
Stay strong and healthy.

Chez said...

Angel Star thank you for your wisdom. Lovely to have you here. It has been awhile.

Chez said...

Di it is complex, yet simple; We are negotiating uncharted waters!
Haydn is genuine in his attempts to do the 'right' thing for both of us. I believe that is impossible! Our needs are so very different these days. I will write more here later. Maybe even talk to you on the phone beforehand. Your comments are always welcome and appreciated my friend. Love Chez xo

rama said...

I feel you worry too much, and get tensed emotionally. Why not let life unfold itself, if you allow it to do what is to be done, you might be surprised by the results.
Be patient, and you would surely find things happening that is amicable to both you and your partner.
You are always in my prayers.

rama said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Maundering mutterer said...

I think that the move is something that you have to do. If others are willing to help you to get what you need, there is nothing to do but to celebrate the fact that you are loved!

Starry said...

I'm having a little giggle at the first comment, but not directed at the poster... its just that every single thing I get from California has the exact same warning, they are the strictest labellers in the world! Its a wonder they have anything on their store shelves.

I know you live with so many questions, so much weighing on your mind, Chez, but I have a feeling when things come together, both a buyer for the farm, and a place for you to set up home, that you will know.

anyway I have to go back and check for any posts by you that I've missed as i haven't been visiting blog at all.
love you xoxox

Ronni Gordon said...

I live in Western Massachusetts in the US in an area called the Pioneer Valley that is also said to trap emissions from the coal mines in our Midwest. We do have a slightly increased cancer rate, though the cases are not considered clusters because they are not all the same type of cancer.

After I got leukemia I did worry about it. But it's beautiful here, rolling hills and such, and close to the major treatment center where I go, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. (About an hour and a half, that is.)

If anyone proved a real cluster such as the infamous Love Canal, where a toxic dump site was responsible for many cases of leukemia, then of course I'd move.

Chez said...

Rama you are probably right! Twice in the one day I heard the same thing.
I do love passionately and care deeply. Does that mean I am tensed emotionally?
Thank you for your prayers Rama. My prayer today is that the Lord pinpoints the areas in which I need to change. I will go 'within' and await the answers.
Love and gratitude xo

Chez said...

Thanks MM for your words of wisdom. Waiting patiently to hear from the Real Estate.
A gardening question if you are able to help..
Is 'normal' for proteas to 'turn up their toes' unexpectedly after about 10 years?
Many thanks

Chez said...

Starry, as usual I know that you are right dear friend. Haydn and I have always had a habit of making decisions that we believe to be 'right,' secure in the knowledge that things work out 'perfectly' for those who make the most of the way things work out.
Sitting up eating Toblerone knowing it is bedtime.
We do have some things of interest that I would like to chat to you about. Car hunting has taken every available free moment.
Love Chez xo

Chez said...

Ronnie it seems the causes of cancer are many and varied. Our situation is similar to yours. We have a beautiful location only about an hour from the hospital to which I go for treatment including, OT, Physio, Cancer Support, Meditation etc. The mines are not the only reason the farm has gone on the market. Feel very grateful to Haydn for being prepared to make such a decision although we both agree that neighbours would take some getting used to.
Love and friendship xo

nancyspoint said...

Chez, Who knows how the environment we live in affects our health. Some things are not in our control. It must be hard to realize Haydn is in this position (another ill partner) and I'm sure you do feel guilt. However, maybe this willingness to move is his gift to you. Maybe he really wants to do this for you. Sometimes receiving love is difficult. Where ever you two end up living, I hope things settle down and "smooth out." Best wishes.

Chez said...

Nancy you are so right! It is not possible to remove ourselves from environmental toxins these days. Haydn suggested that it has always been about my ability to give and that I am at the back of the class when it comes to receiving. I have thoughts about being a burden to him and, in our discussion, he assured me there is no problem, this is exactly what he wants to do.
Things will be fine. We had some 'personal' issues that were getting in the way for me. We appear to have resolved them for the moment.
Thanks so much for your valuable comments my friend.

Paul C said...

I live in the country but close to a city with high air pollution levels from diesel trucks. What you are saying about environmental factors rings true.

Chez said...

Paul it is just one of many factors that governments have chosen to overlook as they reduce services and funds in the area of health. We must take responsibility ourselves.