Illawara Coal has defended plans to build a mine second ventilation shaft that pumps out 600 cubic metres of air a near a public school.
The shaft will be located 600 metres from Douglas Primary School, but the company says it is necessary for their to ventilate the underground workings of Appin colliery.
"The air that’s coming out of the shaft is basically the air that we breathe and it is indeed the air that the workforce that works underground breathes," says Illawarra coal spokesman John Brannon.
He says issues regarding the shaft within the community have been dealt with, and they have assured the residents that the development will be safe.
"People raised those issues and what we did was address all the issues that people raised in our environmental assessment," he said.
"There were no questions that people raised that we didn’t address through our environmental assessment process."
The mine plans are being considered by the New South Wales Planning Department.