The Queensland Rail Council (QRC) has announced it will conduct a comprehensive coal dust monitoring program along the length of the western and metropolitan rail systems running through to the Port of Brisbane.

QRC Chief Executive, Michael Roche, said that the first round of monitoring will begin in the first week of March, and will obtain baseline information on dust and particulate levels at key sights along the rail corridor.

Monitoring will be conducted for one month at dedicated sites at Oakey, Toowoomba, Ipswich, Tennyson, Fairfield and Coorparoo, adjacent to the coal rail corridor. Simultaneous monitoring at Chelmer, which is not adjacent to the coal corridor, will provide background control measurements.
“Where possible, the monitoring is being conducted at the same locations used for a Queensland Rail coal dust monitoring study in 1999,” Mr Roche said.

State Minister for Transport and Main Roads, Scott Emerson, said the Queensland Government welcomed the move.

“I welcome the industry’s commitment to organising an independent monitoring program to test coal dust at a number of key sites,” Mr Emerson said.

“The results of the testing will provide further insight into the coal industry’s environmental performance.

“Today I visited the Port of Brisbane to inspect the coal dust management process already in place as well as coal loading facilities.”