MCA Submission on the Draft Variation to the National Environmental Protection Measure

The Australian minerals industry is committed to its social license to operate and the management of air quality and its potential impacts on communities is fundamental to this commitment. Accordingly, the industry has, and continues to invest in, improved scientific understanding of air quality and industry’s real and potential impacts as well as the development of leading practice approaches to the management of air emissions.

The Australian minerals industry supports the Ambient Air Quality National Environmental Protection Measure (AAQ NEPM) as a driver for improvements in national air quality.

The MCA considers new or revised standards should only be introduced when there is a clear and compelling case to do so. Where significant uncertainty remains, the proposed standards should be piloted to ensure their implementation will be both practical, cost effective and achieve the desired results.

The MCA notes with concern that those charged with implementation of the AAQ NEPM appear to frequently misinterpret the intent of the standards which are aimed at guiding overall policy formulation. It is in this context of variable and inconsistent use of the AAQ NEPM standards that frames the industry’s response to the proposed variation to the standards and for which the industry seeks the support of the National Environmental Protection Council in encouraging other jurisdictions to use the AAQ NEPM for the purpose for which it was created.

This MCA submission is supported by State representative bodies, including the New South Wales Minerals Council, the Queensland Resources Council, the Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia and the South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy.

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