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BlueScope fined over dust from gale winds

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BlueScope Steel has been fined $1,500 and warned over dust emissions last year at its Port Kembla steelworks, caused by high winds.

The Illawarra Mercury reports that the EPA noted these events on August 12, and on October 17 and 23, and that these were in excess of BlueScope’s licence conditions.

"Even though BlueScope Steel was aware of predicted gale-force winds [in August], the company failed to take adequate steps to minimise the emission of fugitive dust from the premises," the regulator’s Illawarra manager, Peter Bloem, said.

"Pre-watering of stockpiles is a critical component of dust control and unfortunately on this occasion, the company did not act until it was too late."

The first case in October saw a warning issued, with the second to be addressed by a pollution reduction program.

"While the EPA recognises dust management at the site can be difficult ... especially during strong winds commonly experienced in Wollongong, the community expects a high level of control to ensure dust impacts are minimised at all times," the Mercury reports Bloem as explaining.

Image: beca.com

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