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Dust suppression initiatives ongoing at Hazelwood

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World Coal,

The Hazelwood Rehabilitation Project, which is managing the rehabilitation of the Hazelwood power station and coal mine in Victoria, Australia, is undertaking a series of dust suppression initiatives across the site.

One of these already under way is the spreading of a mulch product from Australian Paper over the Hazelwood Ash Pond 4 (HAP4).

Hazelwood Project Environmental Manager Regulatory, Ross Brooker, said a series of dust mitigation initiatives were already in place across the site, however because of extensive rehabilitation activities and unseasonally low rainfall, dust issues could still occur on days of high wind.

The project has engaged Gippsland Soil Solutions (GSS) to place a nominal 30 mm layer of Bonded Fibre Matrix mulch material over HAP4. The mulch material has been used as a dust suppressant at Loy Yang A AGL Mine and the Energy Brix site.

HAP4 is around 33 hectares in size and the mulching works are expected to be complete in July.

Forecast high wind days also trigger a process of pre-wetting of the exposed coal within the mine to minimise coal dust.

In addition to this, a water sprinkler system installed in the Hazelwood Ash Retention Area (HARA) in the base of the mine is also proving effective to suppress dust.

“The area was once covered in water and wet ash but it is drying out with rehabilitation,” Brooker said. “If high winds are predicted, we turn on the sprinkler system which completely covers the area. This can be done from just two large control valves.”

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Australia coal news