Dust advice for businesses
Find out how your business can eliminate or reduce the risk of harm from dust.
Dust is a common air pollutant. Many different sources and activities generate dust, including:
When business and industries don’t manage dust, it can impact people’s health and the environment, including:
Dust’s impacts on the environment include:
Businesses and industries that need to manage dust include:
When you use a structured way to eliminate or reduce the risks of harm dust poses, it helps you:
Failure to eliminate or reduce these risks could mean you face:
Businesses should make sure dust from their activities doesn’t harm human health or the environment. This includes being responsible for contractors or tradespeople you may hire.
You have obligations to:
You may also need to meet specific conditions if your activity is a prescribed activity under the permissions scheme. This applies to businesses with a licence, permit or registration.
You should also check if you need to comply with any local council requirements.
Nuisance dust can cause harm to human health and the environment. It can also cause damage to property. This can result in increased cleaning and maintenance around homes and/or businesses. EPA has created new guidance on the assessment of nuisance dust to help determine the risk of harm caused by nuisance dust.
Guidance for Assessing Nuisance Dust provides a framework to assess risks from nuisance dust. This publication is intended for the following:
Furthermore, this will assist decision makers, planners, environmental managers, consultants and industry.
The Environment Protection Act 2017 (the Act) came into force on 1 July 2021. This heralds a new era in the way pollution and waste are to be managed. That is, to reduce their effects on public health and the environmental values all Victorians enjoy. The assessment process in these guidelines and the approach taken are determined by the provisions of the Act.
One of the new overarching provisions is the duty to eliminate or minimise the risks posed by hazards to prevent harm. The cornerstone of the Environment Protection Act is s25 “General Environmental Duty” (GED). In simple terms, it requires all Victorians to take precautionary and reasonable actions to avoid creating hazards and harm before they happen. This goes beyond the previous approach which was to control actual hazards and harm once they were identified.
How is it useful?
An understanding of these risks can inform decisions made by authorities or industry to minimise the potential for future hazards or harm. Practitioners in nuisance dust assessment can use this guide to support them in:
The main feature of the guide is a new qualitative risk assessment tool for use in assessing the risk posed by nuisance dust. These are based on three key elements:
Other features of the guide include:
For more information, download the guidance for assessing dust.
Reviewed 23 June 2022