Air Quality

We know that dust is one of the key environmental concerns for our neighbouring communities. We understand that if not managed appropriately, the nature and scale of our operations have the potential to generate dust and negatively impact our community.

How we manage dust

Our primary dust management control is our Intelligent Dust Management System (IDMS). This system utilises information from an onsite weather station as well as stations from the Bureau of Meteorology to continuously assess stockpile moisture levels and weather conditions to prevent dust lift-off, stopping dust at the source. The system uses a specialised evapotranspiration algorithm to calculate the moisture levels on stockpile surfaces. A network of Real-Time Dust Monitors (RTDM) within the site boundary is also used to report onsite dust concentration measurements. The stockyard water sprays are automatically activated to proactively manage stockpile moisture and additional spray cycles may be triggered to respond to RTDM alerts or increased dust-risk conditions such as wind speed and temperature. The IDMS water sprays are also utilised as required throughout all conveyor transfer operations, from train unloading through to shiploading.

To reduce the potential for dust generation, dust management is considered throughout Port Waratah’s network of infrastructure, incorporating soft-flow chutes, minimal drop heights, conveyor belt cleaning systems and enclosed facilities wherever possible, including rail receival stations, coal transfer points and conveyors. Operational dust management practices include activating additional conveyor sprays during coal transfers, operation of mobile water carts, wetting down hardstand areas, the use of mobile spray systems, manual hosing or spraying of coal, housekeeping and routine site cleaning programme and revegetating or sealing open areas.  Port Waratah is committed to delaying, or if required, ceasing operations in adverse conditions.

Click on the infographic to zoom in and find out more about how we manage dust


If you would like to talk to a member of our environmental team to discuss a concern or find out more information please call us on the 24 hour community enquiry line 02 4907 2280. 

How do I find out more about dust levels?

The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) website provides a range of background reading and information about their latest studies.

To improve access to easy to understand information about air quality in Newcastle, the Newcastle Local Air Quality Monitoring Network was launched in 2014.

This provides real time updates about air quality with both high level summaries and detailed information. Click on the map below to visit the NSW Department of Planning, Industry & Environment's (DPIE) real-time local air quality monitoring network.  

The predicted air quality rating is published daily in the weather section of the Newcastle Herald.


Please note the Newcastle Local Air Quality Monitoring Network is independently managed by the NSW Department of Planning, Industry & Environment, and measures ambient air quality in the Newcastle Region.

Community Enquiries

Are you concerned about air quality or noise? We care about your concern and will respond within 24hrs.

Managing Dust

We're proud to be a pioneer. Hear why we've created a world leading dust management system.