Communication Strengthens Communities: Port Waratah keen to hear local voices

Local Newcastle residents are invited to share their views to influence and inform Port Waratah Coal Services’ decision making and strategy through the Local Voices Community Survey, now open until 19 October.

The survey is a check-in with stakeholders and the local community on a number of topics, including environmental aspects, such as air quality and noise, economic benefit, community investment and in this pulse survey, views of the lease extension of the Carrington Coal Terminal. It takes only 5-10 minutes to complete.

Built from a foundation with CSIRO, the survey is conducted independently by Voconiq, a data science, research and community engagement company that bridges the gap between communities and companies.

Now in its third year, the Local Voices Survey is a significant part of the organisation’s community engagement strategy as explained by CEO Port Waratah, Hennie du Plooy.

“Local Voices surveys are a touchstone with our local community every six months. Regular communication is key to building strong relationships with local residents and key stakeholders, ensuring we are aware of community interests and concerns about our operations” said Mr du Plooy.

“The survey helps us to make more informed decisions and results captured over time highlight where we are improving and where there is a need to focus our efforts.

“We had record numbers with more than 700 survey participants in March, 50 per cent from local portside suburbs. We value the voices of people living in our neighbouring suburbs and the wider Newcastle region. We are here to listen.”

Results from the previous survey indicated that ratings of environmental impacts remained steady, or slightly increased. Port Waratah has continued to invest in air-quality management with new dust monitors installed earlier this year to continually improve our Intelligent Dust Management System capabilities. The community feedback on topics of interest has also shaped the content of Port Waratah communications from our website and social media through to our annual reports and the newsletters delivered to 10,000 portside suburb homes.

For every survey that is completed five dollars is donated to a local community organisation. Since 2018, more than $13,400 in funding has been distributed to community groups in the Newcastle area.

Have your say about Port Waratah operations and activities before Tuesday 19 October. For more information and to register and complete the Local Voices Community Survey, visit https://voconiqlocalvoices.com/portwaratah?SRC=PWS.