More than 600 air pollution alerts have been issued across NSW this year, twice as many as in 2018.
All 14 air pollution monitoring stations in the Hunter Valley have recorded multiple exceedances of the national standard for coarse and fine particle pollution.
Doctors and community representatives met in Singleton on Monday evening to discuss the impacts of the air pollution crisis.
The meeting preceded Tuesday's Upper Hunter Mining Dialogue, convened by the NSW Minerals Council.
Singleton GP Bob Vickers said he had observed a strong relationship between air pollution and respiratory illness in Singleton and Muswellbrook.
"There is no safe level of exposure to particle pollution," he said.
"In the Hunter Valley, 90 per cent of coarse particle pollution (PM10) comes from open cut coal mines. The mines, mining vehicles and power stations are also major sources of fine particle pollution."
Dr Vickers, who has addressed several hearings of the NSW Independent Planning Commission, also addressed Singleton Council on Monday night.
"After almost a decade, the Mining Dialogue convened by the mining industry has failed to reduce the disastrous impacts of coal mines in the Hunter," Dr Vickers, who is also a members of the Doctors for the Environment Group, said.
"In fact, impacts have worsened and air pollution is at a crisis point."
More than 30 doctors signed a joint letter in September 2018 calling on ministers for health and the environment to take action to improve air quality in the region.
The letter also called for action to make the coal mining industry pay for the damage caused by its air pollution.
The NSW Environment Protection Authority has previously said that the state's air quality is generally good by international standards.
It argues there has been a long-term trend of declining emissions from industry over the past decade.
It said particulate pollution in the Hunter Valley is caused by a range of factors including dust storms associated with drought, bush fires and hazard reduction burns and in winter, wood heaters, as well as industry.
"The EPA is committed to working with the community and other stakeholders to improve understanding about air quality issues," it said in a previous statement.
"The EPA leads business and the community to improve their environmental performance and employs regulatory tools, education, partnerships and economic mechanisms to achieve environmental outcomes."
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