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Oxenford air quality monitoring project

In late 2019, community members reported concerns about environmental and health impacts of dust in Oxenford.

As a result, the department commenced an investigation into air quality to identify potential risks to the community.

Quarry operators in the area provided their dust monitoring data. The department reviewed this data and found no signals of environmental or health risk to the neighbouring community.

The department recognises that community members are still concerned about potential health impacts. To respond to these concerns, the department launched its own 12-month air quality monitoring project, commencing in April 2020.

Air quality monitoring methodology

The department is undertaking three types of monitoring at Oxenford:

  • dust deposition (dust nuisance);
  • the presence of respirable crystalline silica (RCS); and
  • real-time monitoring (RTM) of air quality.

The department works with its air quality specialists to carefully select monitoring locations.  Locations are determined to try and understand the exposure to the community from potential sources.

Dust deposition

The department collects dust samples and sends these to a laboratory for independent analysis. This analysis provides the department with information about dust composition, which can be used to help identify the source of the dust. See interim results (PDF, 1,000 KB) .

Respirable crystalline silica (RCS)

The department collects monitoring information to determine the extent of crystalline silica in the air. Air standards are based on an annual average, so instrumentation needs to be in place for a minimum of 12 months. See interim results (PDF, 1,000 KB) .

Real-time monitoring (RTM)

The department ran a trial to collect air quality data in real time between April and September 2020. Results of this trial provided indicative results of local air quality during this period. The purpose was also to ensure our compliance officers had information in real time on any issues. See results from the real-time monitoring trial (PDF, 840 KB) .

Partisol respirable crystalline silica sampling and dust deposition equipment.

How long is the monitoring going for?

The department will continue to collect dust deposition and RCS data for a minimum of 12 months (April 2020 – April 2021). This will allow us to see any seasonal variations in air quality. If the department finds consistent elevated levels or community risk, it will conduct further investigations.

The department expects to provide community members with the results of the monitoring project in mid-2021.

Further information and resources

Learn more about the project in the Frequently asked questions .

Report environmental nuisance

Community reports play a vital role in helping the department respond to, and investigate, the source of an issue in a timely manner.

You can report environmental nuisance (e.g. noise, dust, odour) using one of the options below:

Related information

Detailed air quality monitoring data is also available from the following sources: