DuPont seeks to tackle minings dust problems

first_imgAs part of its Environmental Management offering, DuPont Sustainable Solutions is introducing a new dust management solution for mining. The company argues that a holistic, and integrated approach to dust management is one of the most effective and sustainable ways to mitigate the multitude of risks posed by dust emissions that threaten the mining and other dust-emitting industries.The group states: “Controlling fugitive dust emissions is a perennial and important issue for the mining community and other industries that produce dust.  Dust emissions have health, safety, environmental, community and licence to operate implications.  While there are a wide range of dust management solutions and dust suppression products available, there is no single solution that addresses all dust generation scenarios. By taking a holistic and integrated approach the new DuPont dust management solution will provide mining companies with technical and management solutions complemented with dust suppression products to deliver effective and sustainable dust management solutions.”In recent years, DuPont has received Environmental Management and Dust Control Technology awards in Australia for its work with Anglo Coal Australia in reducing dust emissions from coal trains by as much as 90%. DuPont was awarded its second Environmental Management Award in 2011 for work with Port Waratah Coal Services (PWCS), the world’s largest coal export port. DuPont helped PWCS develop and implement a holistic dust management solution across all of the major operations on the site.  At the core of the solution was an Intelligent Dust Management System that actively analyses a range of critical parameters that cause dust emissions, determines the risk and proactively applies mitigation actions to prevent dust generation from happening. As a result dust emissions were reduced to some of the lowest levels on record for the site.The company states: “A number of factors ranging from how and where the dust is generated, to climate, location, environmental considerations, cost and ease of use influence the approach to dust control. Add to that the vast range of different dust suppression products available, from synthetic polymers to water absorbing salts, and petroleum to enzyme, clay or organic based products and you have a situation that is anything but simple.”In an effort to address some of these issues, collaborative research is being conducted by DuPont and the University of Wollongong, near Sydney, in a project that is also supported by the Australian Research Council (ARC). Currently, there is no standard test to compare the performance of dust suppression products, nor is there a unified test for the ‘dustiness’ of a product in mining countries around the world. The project aims to establish a unified approach to testing dust suppression products and to make their comparison more meaningful. Furthermore, the research is looking to develop dust suppression agents that are environmentally sustainable as well as effective.“Fugitive dust emission can occur during any of the stages in mining, stone crushing or cement production, transportation or storage. As such, dust should be tackled via a holistic and integrated approach and not be treated as a problem for the safety, environment, production or operation teams to manage. Everyone on site has a responsibility,” Dr Leong Mar of DuPont Sustainable Solutions warns. “Once dust particles are generated and become airborne, it does not matter in which part of the site they originated, they become a problem for the whole site.”last_img read more