Mining’s peak industry body in Queensland has given its seal of approval to new measures aimed at reducing coal dust related disease.
The Queensland Resources Council has welcomed the certainty provided from the State Government’s announcement of new interim standards to reduce allowable coal dust measurements.
The Palaszczuk Government has announced amendments to the Coal Mining Safety and Health Regulation 2017 reducing the regulated limit for respirable dust at coal mines from 3.0 milligrams a cubic metre to 2.5 milligrams a cubic metre.
This change will align both Queensland and New South Wales standards.
The health and safety of workers was the top priority in the resources sector, QRC Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane said.
“We are vigilant to ensure we have the highest standards and the most robust framework for health and safety,” Mr Macfarlane said.
“The resources industry has worked co-operatively and constructively with the State Government to address matters relating to Coal Workers’ Pneumoconiosis and other mine dust lung diseases.
“This has included the development of new standards to control and measure dust more effectively, and changes to the coal Mine Workers’ Health Scheme.”
The Queensland industry was well placed to meet the new standard when it was introduced due to the good work undertaken by operators and workers at mine sites, said Mr Macfarlane.
“We will continue to consult with the Government on the recommendations of the CWP Select Committee’s final report,” he said.
“We also welcome the ongoing work from the Federal Government on the Safe Work Australia airborne contaminants exposure standard review and we look forward to that review being finalised as soon as possible.
“Any further reductions in dust level should only be based on the best available scientific information and monitoring techniques available. The SWA review is the correct place for the science to be examined.”