Residents living opposite Port of Cairns kick up a stink over ship funnel emissions.
Wharf Street residents call for better control of the fumes from cruise ship smoke stacks.
Piermonde Apartments residents Belinda and Patrick Peck said a change in wind direction in the past two months had forced them to keep their windows shut.
“It makes us feel sick, absolutely sick. We have headaches, and it stinks,” she said.
“Who wants to breathe that? Who wants to get that forced into their apartment? It’s just terrible.”
She said they and their neighbours were fans of the ships coming into the port and the visitors that they brought.
“We’re not trying to stop the ships. We love the ships, we love what it does for the economy,” she said.
“But we have emission controls with cars, so we need emission controls with ships.”
Mrs Peck and her neighbours have resorted to wearing breathing apparatus when venturing on to their balconies.
“I bought these masks from an auction, and they’re fireman’s masks, so you can breathe in a smoky environment,” she said.
“If we want to go on to our balcony while the ships are in, that’s what we need to do. It’s terrible. It’s not just that it puts us out – it does, but that’s not the issue – it’s the health issue, it’s a very serious health risk.”
She said there had to be a way for cruise ships visiting the terminal to limit their emissions.
“I don’t want to put up with this any longer,” she said. “I just think it’s bad for the city.”
P&O Cruises spokesman David Jones said the company had not received any complaints about the emissions coming from its ships.
“P&O Cruises is not aware of any issues or concerns about ship operations there which of course comply with all regulatory guidelines,” he said.
“We have been gratified by the support of the Cairns and district community for the economic benefit that cruise tourism is injecting locally.”
P&O currently injects $6 million annually into the Cairns economy.