‘Smart’ dust management system earns DuPont, NCIG environmental awards

A project that saw dust emissions at the Newcastle Coal Infrastructure Group (NCIG) coal terminal reduced by more than 60 per cent has earned DuPont and NCIG two environmental excellence awards.

The project, developed and implemented at the NCIG coal terminal, won the Dust Control Technology Award at the Australian Bulk Handling Awards and the Environmental Excellent Award at the Australian Mining Prospect Awards.

Project director and environmental dust management consultant at DuPont Sustainable Solutions, Dr Leong Mar, says that an integrated approach, backed by strong science and a committed partner, can achieve real and sustainable solutions to managing fugitive dust emissions in mining.

‘Managing different coal types and the strong impact of weather to prevent the dust from getting airborne in the first place is probably the most critical aspect of a good dust management program for a coal terminal,’ Dr Mar said.

‘By using our science, and by working closely with NCIG, we have been able to develop and install a fully automated integrated dust management system that is reactive, predictive and proactive.

‘The system is able to analyse and respond reactively to a number of changing parameters, such as coal type, weather conditions and increased dust emission levels. The key feature is the system is also able to predict the dust risks up to 36 hours in advance, and instigate dust mitigation measures before adverse weather conditions arrive.’

This is the fourth time DuPont has been recognised for its integrated dust management solutions, having won Australian Mining Prospect and Bulk Handling Awards for environmental excellence in previous years. The DuPont integrated dust management solution has been used with considerable success in several coals ports in NSW.

DuPont Australia Managing Director, Mike Foster, welcomed the awards and the work that DuPont is doing to help reduce impact and occurrence of coal dust in mining.

‘The mining sector is a major focus for DuPont Australia and this project demonstrates how DuPont’s expertise in dust, operational and environmental management was used to help bring about a significant improvement to the dust issue,” Foster said.